Aggies roll tide
Aggies take down number one Alabama
Published: Sunday, November 11, 2012
Updated: Sunday, November 11, 2012 09:11
Back in August, most critics were down on the Texas A&M Aggies joining the powerful Southeastern Conference, not giving A&M any chance for success this season. Fast forward to November and those critics as many in that nation are left in shock after the No. 15 Aggies shocked the No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide 29-24 front of 101,821 in Bryant-Denny Stadium.
“[This win] is big for us,” head coach Kevin Sumlin said.
With the win, the Aggies now stand at 8-2 (5-2) end the Crimson Tide’s 13 game winning streak and has all but ended the national title hopes.
From the opening snap, the Aggies played physical and did not seem intimidated by the roaring crowd or the fact that the No. 1 teams was right in front of them.
Redshirt freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel had a highlight reel game by compiling 253 passing yards with two touchdowns while adding another 92 rushing yards to his total. Running back Ben Malena had 50 yards and Christine Michael added 28 yards but more importantly, Michael had two touchdowns.
The Aggies found themselves up 20-0 after the largest deficit for the Crimson Tide at hpme since 2003 against LSU. During that quarter, Manziel had the offense marching down the field and in the red zone, when he lost the football, caught it in the air and was ab;e to scramble and find senior wideout Ryan Swope for the open touchdown.
“This game I could see that Johnny [Manziel] had a different emotion about him,” Swope said.
Even though the Aggies had the 20 point lead, Alabama and quarterback A.J. McCarron were not about to go down quietly.
Alabama managed to cut the lead to three points, but the Aggie defense stood their ground and forced three turnovers and held premier running back Eddie Lacy to 92 yards.
“We played with a chip on our shoulder,” Swope said. “We were just trying to make a statement that we could compete with anybody in this league.”
That would be the closest though that the Crimson Tide would get as the Aggies seemed to have an answer every time the Tide would get closer.
The Aggies played the game with a swagger, with an attitude, much like all season, that this was their game. The offense had a good rhythm, making clutch plays when they needed to. Manziel for much of the first half was able to scramble and use his legs for big plays including a 32 yard dash that set up the touchdown to Swope, who finished the contest with 111 yards on 11 receptions.
At times it seemed that Alabama would find a way to breakthrough and take the lead but Mark Snyder’s defense bent, but never broke as Damantre Moore and Kirby Ennis each had a sack in crucial drives that stalled the Crimson Tide’s momentum.
In the final quarter, Alabama’s McCarron seemingly had the Tide in position to take the lead, trailing 29-24 and having completed a 54 yard pass to wideout Kenny Bell. On a fourth and goal however at the two yard line, Aggie defensive back Deshazor Everett intercepted the pass.
On a fourth down with less than a minute to go, the Aggies were lining up to punt the ball, the Aggies forced the Crimson Tide to jump offside and seal the fate for the Tide.
When it seemed that the Aggies would struggle against the No. 1 scoring defense, the Aggies proved to the nation that the Aggies are a serious threat to the rest of the SEC and the nation.
“Not to take away anything from Johnny, but this was a total and complete team effort,” Sumlin said.
With a marquee victory, it seems as if the sleeping giant in the heart of Texas has awoken.
“This will show us in the future when we sit here saying that something’s hard or something’s impossible, nothing is impossible; you can do anything you put your mind to,” Morre said.