On a brisk fall morning down in the Plains, the Auburn Tigers welcome in No. 20 ranked Texas A&M in an SEC West clash. Both coaches have a bit of a history together as the last time they faced off was in the national championship back in 2013.
At the time, Gus Malzahn was in his first season as Auburn’s head coach and Jimbo Fisher was leading the Florida State Seminoles. Five years later, the script has changed quite a bit.
One week removed from a bye week, the Tigers started their first possession with a three and out. Upon punting the ball to the Aggies, they drove down the field and settled for a 35-yard field goal off the leg of Seth Small.
Two possessions later, Texas A&M quarterback Kellen Mond tries to run an option play, but the ball isn’t pitched well and results in a fumble for the Aggies. Auburn recovers deep in A&M territory and capitalizes with a trick play: a 20-yard touchdown pass from Ryan Davis to Sal Cannella.
On the next series, the Aggies respond with a 38-yard touchdown run up the middle from Trayveon Williams, A&M’s leading rusher, taking the lead 10-7 in the beginning of the second quarter. Auburn answers right back with a fantastic 9 play, 80 yard drive highlighted by an 11 yard TD pass by Stidham to freshman Seth Williams.
That would give the Tigers the 14-10 edge with under five minutes in the second half. A&M gets an opportunity to score before half and they do just that going 75 yards in 6 plays. The touchdown pass to Trayveon Williams gives the lead back to the Aggies who take it into halftime up 17-14.
Texas A&M gets the ball to start the second half and Kellen Mond connects with Jace Sternberger for a 42 yard reception. This sets the Aggies up in the red zone and after a few Auburn penalties, Williams again dives into the end zone for his third touchdown on the day. A&M leads the Tigers 24-14 midway through the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, A&M starts to drive down the field once again but Mond’s pass is picked off by Noah Igbinoghene. With seven minutes left in the game, Auburn takes the ball downfield in a hurry. Wide receiver Darius Slayton catches 3 passes on the drive and it is capped off by a 1 yard touchdown dive by fullback Chandler Cox. Auburn is now within 3 points.
The Tigers force another punt and with two minutes to go in the game, Stidham throws a dart to Ryan Davis who hits a move on a defender and scatters for 47 yards to the 11 yard line. Quarterback Stidham then sits back in the pocket and throws a pass up to Seth Williams to take the lead in the game. A&M is unable to score on the next drive and Auburn wins the game in dramatic fashion, 28-24.
For Texas A&M, this is their 4th loss on the year and their record now sits at 5-4. For Auburn, their record now sits at 6-3.
Coming up next week is a road game in Athens against a Georgia team whose only loss is to LSU and will face Kentucky tonight.