Friday, August 24, 2007

19 Days, 19 Questions: #8

With 8 days left until KICKOFF, 'The Forty' is back in business and going to run down the top 19 questions for the upcoming year.

8: Can Texas win at Kyle Field?

My answer to this would have to be "God, I hope so." If you're a Longhorn fans, you know there is really nothing more obnoxious than an Aggie after a win. How many time have you heard "12-7! Sips suck!" I guess it is hard to know how to react to a win when it happens so infrequently. You would honestly have thought that A&M had won the national championship. However, I get the feeling that they would rather beat Texas than win a championship. It's just funny, you never see Texas fans acting like this after a win. Because we are used to winning. We should win. That's the way it works. Been there, done that, beating Aggie is not a big deal (it only just shuts them up for a few months).

Unfortunately, Texas chose to get upset in Austin, so now they must travel to College Station to avoid losing two in a row. Even when A&M is a bad team, this game makes me nervous. You just never know what can happen at Kyle Field. In 2005, A&M gave Texas all the game they wanted and that was with Vince and a championship team. This game will be no different. In fact, it is likely this game will be the deciding game for who will win the Big 12 South, between Texas, A&M and OU.

A&M returns all parts of a dominant 2006 running game. Stephen McGee, Michael Goodson and Javorski Lane provide an attack that is going to be a handful for the strong Texas run defense. Last year, A&M seemingly ran at will against Texas and always seemed to pick up the big 1st down when they needed to. And like last year, they have the ability to keep the ball out of the hands of Colt McCoy and his powerful offense.

Here's what I see being the difference in this game: 3rd downs. They are absolutely crucial. A&M is going to grind it out. There may be very few big plays, but they are going to be bringing it on ever down. Texas must stop them on the 3rd and mediums and 3rd and shorts to get the offense off the field and get the ball back in the hands of Colt. I don't think A&M's defense will be able to hold down a healthy Jamaal Charles, McCoy and his corps of receivers.

I just can't see that Texas will have the same offensive problems that faced them in 2006. It was clear that Colt could not get anything on his throws and the offense suffered. Needless to say, even in the unfriendly confines of Kyle Field, Texas will score more than 7 points. It just how many they will need to pull out the win is the question. I don't think A&M is a team that is going to put up huge scoring number this year. They are going to run, grind it out and keep scores low. Once again, this is why the defense is going to have to hold the run game and get the ball back to the offense.

Here's the deal. Texas CAN beat A&M. Texas SHOULD beat A&M. But it is, for some reason, hard to see Texas pulling out a win at Kyle. I mean, Texas SHOULD have won in 2006. Honestly, this game is a toss up. It can go either way. But I am going to side with the more talented team in this case. If Colt can go and win at Nebraska as a freshman, he should be able to weather the Kyle Field storm.

My Prediction: Texas 24 A&M 17

I love this picture

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