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THE TAILGATE: A Graphical Preview of Texas A&M at Auburn

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Auburn has no home-crowd advantage, no 12th Man. In fact, they don’t even have the coolest Jordan Hare. Conference play kicks off this week in THE TAILGATE


THANKS FOR THE UVERSE PASSWORD, MOM

Just a sick game last week, brah. I mean, it was just about everything I wanted minus the turnover differential, but that’s to be expected, ya know? I mean, like, Trevor’s gotta take some risks and the offense needed to get settled. Nothing wrong with a little 67-0 tune up game. Plus, the PVAMU band was sick, too. Just sickness all around.

I think the best part of this away game is an opportunity to chill at my place with the bros. Nothing like 15 of your friends getting together to watch a game while we all spew nothingness into the Twittersphere on our wifi connected devices while streaming the game on my parent’s Uverse account. WATCH ESPN BABY! YOU KNOW I’M SAVING THAT MONEY FOR BETTER SEASON TIX NEXT SEASON!

We’ve got the whole spread, dude. Have a seat and crack a Lone Star, or would you prefer some Old Crow and Dr. Thunder? What? Brah, that’s a sick game watching beverage. Three of those bad boys in a Rudy’s cup before halftime and you won’t even know you’re watching football, brah. Wait… What the fu… What does “Too many devices logged in to this account” mean? Hang on a second.

Mom! Mom, I’m serious right now. Did you give the password to anyone else in the family? OK WELL CALL UNCLE TOMMY, COUSIN JENN, AND MY STUPID SISTER CAYDENCE AND TELL THEM TO LOG OFF BECAUSE I HAVE PEOPLE OVER!

Sorry, brah. Had to call mom and straighten this stuff out. I think we’re cool for kickoff. Look, the commercials are clear as day. Oh man, here we go. So stoked for kickoff. WHY IS IT PIXELING? IS THIS WHAT THE VISUALIZATION OF A DAVE SOUTH CALL LOOKS LIKE?!?!

Score Prediction:

Ags: 31
Tigers: 24


*Cayden Janspar is not a real person to my knowledge.


CAST OF CHARACTERS

Time to find out if his improved run game is for real. Auburn rushed for approximately six kilometers last week, but then again they have been known to bend the rules.

We saw great things out of Washington last week, and Olaka has been steady, but we'll need Moore's range and ability to hit against the potent Auburn run attack.

Number eleven should be able to get into some single matchups with Speedy back in the mix, so hopefully we'll see some deep stuff over the top as Knight's accuracy continues to improve.

The junior Ole Miss transfer has been around the SEC. The Tiger OL paved the way for about 5000 rushing yards against Arkansas State, so it's time to see if he's up to facing Myles' improved run skills.

He's the starter. OR IS HE? He also had a career day against Arkansas State. You know who used to coach Arkansas State? Gus Malzahn. This is starting to look like a long con to me.

This guy has been around forever and basically plays all over the secondary as well as on special teams. He's extremely smart and capable of baiting QBs so Trevor beware.


TALKING POINTS

Degrees of Sumlin

1985: a jittery fifth-grader bouncing around the Letterman's Club at Ross-Ade Stadium with his dad. He's got just the beginnings of an education in the game: enough for it to capture his attention briefly with the blur of action down on the field. Enough to remember names when they're called repeatedly.

His dad was once Purdue's quarterback. Therefore he did not wish to learn anything about the current one. He could never replace his dad's exploits. So he listened for the players who were hitting the other team's quarterback, and that's when the name first became implanted in his brain: Sumlin.

A linebacker walk-on, but started every game. The kid didn't know much about what a walk-on was, but he decided he wanted to be one. So he did just that. Not at Purdue, but at Michigan. Twelve years later he became the starting quarterback and went undefeated there and following a 24-3 drubbing of Minnesota for the Little Brown Jug he's looking at the Gophers' QB coach and it's that same guy who made all those tackles. It's Sumlin.

"He's learning offense now," the college QB realizes. "A defensive guy coaching offense." He wonders briefly if their football careers will cross paths again, but then he's busy thinking about beating four straight ranked teams to win a national title, and he turns back to his teammates. Then a voice in his head stops him. "Maybe one day I'll retire from the NFL and go into broadcasting like my dad, and then years later I'll have the opportunity to call a game that Sumlin's coaching in. He'll be a head coach by then. I'd better go talk to him so I'll have an insightful anecdote to share with the audience."

By the time he turns back to find the assistant coach, he's nowhere in sight. So much for insight.


WHAT TO WATCH FOR

ALWAYS A WIDESMAID

Offensive Coordinator Noel Mazzone took one last parting shot at Josh Rosen yesterday, making sure to compliment the gameday atmosphere at Jordan-Hare Stadium. Mazzone knows the stadium well because he was once the OC at Auburn, making this the third consecutive week that he will coach against a former employer. That is not actually true since he never coached at PVAMU, but for a second you believed it because he has held more jobs than Jarod.

HOLD ON TO YOUR HOT POTATOES

This game is critical for both head coaches who need to prove to the clamoring masses that the ship has been righted, the momentum is forward, and yes this is certainly the year. Malzahn is feeling the heat because his Tigers have been unable to crack the top 5 in the national rankings since the last time the Aggies visited. Sumlin is feeling the heat because the true freshman that beat them that day (and his little sidekick Short Round) have left A&M.

INACCURATE POLLS

MULTIPLE CHOICE: The Aggies head into the match ranked #17 in the country, but are 4 point underdogs to the unranked Tigers because

a) the AP rankings are actually just an elaborate and nonsensical dead pool perpetrated by underground Macau gambling rings

b) these polls are meaningless because they say things I don't like

c) Auburn is finally getting the credit they deserve for trouncing college football powerhouse Arkansas State


ELSEWHERE IN THE SEC

#1 ALABAMA @ #19 OLE MISS

Ole Miss has the best quarterback in the SEC and a two-game win streak against the Tide. Nick Saban has the terrible fruits of his labor toiling in the football mines and the smoldering remains of Lane Kiffin. The Rebels' opening three games make a strong argument for the Baylor school of scheduling, and Saban's opening three games make a strong argument for never ever taking anything this seriously in life.


HOTREELZ


LET'S HAVE A STATGASM


PLACE YOUR BETS


READER SUBMISSION


BEST CASE / WORST CASE

BEST CASE

The Aggie Defense does what we think the Aggie Defense is capable of: just wrecks shop all damn night. Myles Garrett and Daeshon Hall spend so much time in Auburn's backfield that they're required to start paying rent. Knight plays relaxed, confident, and just lets loose to Noil, Seals-Jones, and Kirk. Ford has a great day behind the ever-developing offensive line. John Chavis learns to use the force in the 4th quarter and begins willing interceptions.

WORST CASE

Cocky after a big victory in a tune up game, the Ags come out lethargic. Misdirection plays keep the defense on their heels, and the pass rush is rendered ineffective. Trevor throws some untimely picks, and the young offensive line takes a step back. I decide to do an impression of the game and eat 3 pounds of Olestra.