Texas A&M is coming off a 19-13 loss to No. 4 Georgia, as the Aggies prepare for their final game of the season at No. 1 LSU.
The A&M offense showed signs of regression against the Bulldogs, but seemed to have also shown flashes of strength.
The Aggie offense has had its share of ups and downs this season with strong performances against weaker opponents and stagnant performances against the elite teams on the schedule.
The Aggies averaged just above 17 points per game in their four losses and above 40 points in their seven wins. With LSU going into the game ranked first in the nation, this should be another lackluster offensive performance by the Aggies. However, LSU differs from the other four ranked opponents on A&M’s schedule.
In the Aggies’ four losses, each defense A&M played ranked inside the top 20 nationally in total defense. Meanwhile, LSU enters the matchup ranked just 43rd in total defense, allowing 362 yards per game. If strong opposing defenses have been the common factor in the Aggies’ struggles, LSU may not pose the problem to A&M that other teams have.
A&M coach Jimbo Fisher said the LSU defense does have talent and experience that could pose issues to teams’ offenses.
“Defensively, [LSU has] very good players,” Fisher said. “You've got two or three first-round draft picks out there on that defense right now. They got guys who can affect you on the first level, affect you on the second level and affect you on the third level. A lot of experience.”
The Aggies will look to junior quarterback Kellen Mond to lead the offense to success. He has passed for 2,710 yards this season with 19 touchdowns and six interceptions, adding 391 yards and seven touchdowns on the ground.
Mond said his team’s experience in playing difficult opponents on the road will help him and his team when they travel to Baton Rouge.
“Playing on the road against Clemson, against Georgia, playing in different environments, and bringing our own energy is something I feel like we got better at,” Mond said. “Going into this LSU game that’s something that is going to be very big.”
Junior receiver Jhamon Ausbon is confident in his offense’s ability in the passing game.
“We know what we can do in the passing game,” Ausbon said. “It’s not new. We’ve been doing it all year. We’re pretty confident in the receivers and confident in Kellen to make the throws.”
Another key player to the A&M offense is freshman running back Isaiah Spiller. He is coming off of one of his worst performances of the season as he only rushed for seven yards against Georgia’s conference leading rushing defense. However, the Aggies have shown some of their best offensive performances when Spiller plays well, with six of their seven wins coming in games that the running back rushed for over 70 yards.
Kickoff between A&M and LSU in Tiger Stadium is set for 6 p.m. in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on Nov. 30. The game will be broadcast on ESPN.