Last Saturday, the Aggies won their fourth consecutive game with a 30-6 victory over South Carolina, securing a fifth straight season of seven or more wins while making sure the team stays .500 in SEC matchups. This week, Texas A&M begins the final stretch of the season as the Aggies travel to Athens to face No. 4 Georgia. The Bulldogs enter this matchup having secured their third consecutive SEC East title while remaining in the running for the College Football Playoff. Here are five things to watch for as the Aggies take on Georgia.
1. A battle of brawns
Georgia and A&M are two run-heavy offenses, each rushing over 38 times a game over their last four games. They are also coached by former disciples of Nick Saban who instill tough mentality and set of expectation in their players. While Georgia had a much more successful season, both teams possess Top-50 offenses and Top-25 defenses. Both teams preach a tough, physical approach, and the game will become a battle at the line of scrimmage.
2. Isaiah Spiller and the ground game
One element of the Aggies’ physicality that has been on display is their growth in the run game. Since the Auburn game, the rushing attack has increased its output in each game, and the South Carolina matchup demonstrated the advantages of the run-first strategy. The duo of Isaiah Spiller and Cordarrian Richardson gave the Aggies two tailbacks to rotate between, and quarterback Kellen Mond was also a threat on the ground. As the Georgia run defense ranks third, allowing less than 76 yards per game, the battle between the A&M rush attack and the Georgia rush defense will be a focal point when the Aggies take the field.
3. D’Andre Swift and the Georgia rushing attack
While their passing game has been inconsistent, the Georgia rushing attack has kept its offense going this season. Against Auburn, the Bulldogs gained more yards on the ground than through the air, thanks to tailback D’Andre Swift’s 106 yards at 6.2 yards per carry. This season, Swift has been a big part of Georgia’s identity on offense, ranking second in the SEC with 1,027 rushing yards through the first 10 games despite often facing defenses loading the box. The Aggie defense has struggled to contain run-heavy offenses, allowing both Mississippi schools to rush for over 200 yards. Georgia will look for Swift and their other tailbacks to wear out the A&M defense.
4. Jake Fromm
Georgia’s starting quarterback has had an inconsistent junior season, completing less than 50 percent of his passes in his last two games while averaging fewer touchdowns than last season. In Georgia’s only loss of the season against South Carolina, Fromm was a big factor with three interceptions, three sacks and a 55 percent completion rate. Against an Aggie defense that has limited the last two SEC quarterbacks they have faced, to less than 50 percent completion, Georgia will look for Fromm to remain consistent and hot.
5. A&M on the road
With Jimbo as head coach, the Aggies have gone 2-4 on the road, their only wins coming against struggling Ole Miss in 2019 and South Carolina in 2018. Against ranked opponents, the Aggies are 2-7 on the road since 2014. In that same span of time, Georgia and LSU are a combined 15-7 against ranked opponents at home. To win one of these two final games, the Aggies will have to work through their road woes.