I see this one ugly. The Defense starts getting some swagger back and shuts down the ISU JUCO transfer QB. They just do not have the firepower to play with us. Christine Michael and Cyrus Gray run for days (I see Malena put up some nice numbers in the late 3rd and 4th)and Ryan Tannehill has another productive day. Nothing fancy in this game for the Ags, just pound it out, play action football. No new wrinkles shown…
I see Texas A&M dominating this game from start to finish. The struggles in the secondary will probably continue but I do believe the Aggie secondary is slowly improving. Look for the Ags to gain hundreds of yards running the ball against a poor run defense and cruise.
108 in total defense, 116 in points allowed. Pretty sure if we put the pedal to the metal we might be able to match either of those in total points for the game. Toss in the fact they are having QB issues and the 20 point spread looks like easy money. I expect Tannehill to be effective, but not spectacular and a whole boatload of Gray/C-Mike, then Malena. Solid defensive effort since they pass for a little more than 200 yards per game. This is going to feel like slow motion for the defense finally. We don't have an off week, but this is as close as you can come to it in conference play. I'll be glad to never have to look at those uniform colors again.
Look for A&M to utilize this game a lot like it did the Kansas game at the midpoint of last season. However, this time will see the defense take some big collective steps forward, progressing and cleaning things up against lesser competition. Offensively the Aggies should put together another clean game, establishing dominance in the trenches, and finding multiple ways to stretch the field (hopefully Jeff Fuller can start becoming part of that again as he's due and needs to start making his move for the second half of the season, now that he's a bit healthier). Still ISU's defense is better than you'd expect, and between that and what should be a hefty wind, expect the balance to tilt towards the run and for Randy "Nails" Bullock to put up a few in a challenging climate.
Iowa State has defensive issues, they are thin at running back due to injuries, both equate to Texas A&M being able to control the game from start to finish both offensively and defensively. The Cyclones are not going to get well on defense against an offense like A&M and the Cyclone passing game is 61st in the country even after playing Northern Iowa, UConn, and Baylor. Does not look like a good matchup at all for ISU.
Earlier in the year, Iowa State surrendered over 300 yards rushing to the Baylor Bears. Last week, the struggling Texas A&M defense gave up less than 100 yards on the ground to Bear. If I connect the dots, it tells me that a potent Texas A&M rushing attack should flourish against a suspect Cyclone rush defense. Iowa State will crowd the box to stop the run, and that will open up the passing lanes with the potential for some big plays. The last time A&M visited Ames, the team was struggling but managed to move the ball at will and won hands down. This year's team is exponentially better and should be able to name its score on offense. The Aggies have only lost to ISU once in the 16 year history of the Big 12, and that won't change on Saturday.. Texas A&M wins comfortably.
Websider Prognosticator Panel - Iowa State
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