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From the other side: LSU vs. Texas A&M

Tiger Blitz caught up with Aggie Digest's Rob Sellers to talk about the upcoming LSU-Texas A&M matchup set for Thanksgiving night.

Billy Embody: Texas A&M is working with their backup quarterback Jake Hubenak. Big loss for the Aggies not to have Trevor Knight, but what does Hubenak bring to this offense?

Rob Sellers: “Hubenak is still a solid passer and has had marginal success with the Aggies. The biggest drop-off you get from Knight to Hubenak is Knight’s knack for using his legs to his benefit. Hubenak is no statue back there but Knight has had a lot of success using his legs in his career.”

BE: A&M will always have some impressive skill players with the likes of Josh Reynolds, Christian Kirk, Trayveon Williams and others, but how has this offensive line operated this season?

RS: “Really the offensive line has been the big question mark. They settled on a line very late in camp but it played very well early in the season. Unfortunately like a lot of other teams this time of year, the Aggies have been hit hard by the injury bug and have really had to shuffle some players to other positions the last few weeks. When healthy they have been much more effective than before Jim Turner’s re-arrival but the injuries have slowed the consistency there.”

BE: Shawn Washington is the leader at linebacker of John Chavis defense, but the secondary is loaded too. How have they performed this season?

RS: “The Aggie safeties are definitely seen as strength of the defense but they too have had to fight the injury bug this year. Justin Evans and Armani Watts have been as advertised when healthy but a couple young players have also seen increased roles as the season has unfolded, including redshirt freshman Larry Pryor who has filled in at times for Watts. The corners have been a little more inconsistent and again have had to use some younger players due to injury. Sophomore Deshawn Capers-Smith has seen an increased role as well and shown some flashes.”

BE: LSU's offensive line has struggled against solid defensive lines like Alabama and Florida this year. There's no letdown with Myles Garrett and Daeshon Hall facing LSU. Can we expect LSU to struggle with this front four?

RS: “I hate to sound like a broken record but again, health can help or hurt the Aggies here. I was concerned when Kevin Sumlin played Garrett against UTSA Saturday but his performance in the game, understanding the level of competition, was a good sign that he may finally be passed the lower leg injury that has hampered him since October. It appears at this point that the Aggies will be healthy on the defensive line and I do think that will play a part in this year’s outcome.”

BE: How do you see this game playing out? Got a prediction yet?

RS: “For some reason I really get the feeling that this game will turn into both teams using offensive methods that are not seen as their strengths. I think A&M will need to run the ball much more effectively to win the game and I think they will try to push that, at least early. In the same mold, I thin LSU may look to find success in the passing game early to take advantage of weak spots with the Aggies.

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