Texas A&M-SMU Football Preview Capsule
Texas A&M (0-1) at SMU (1-1), 2:30 p.m. CT Saturday (FSN)
Line: Texas A&M by 12 1/2
Series Record: Texas A&M leads 42-29-7
WHAT’S AT STAKE
Texas A&M looks to avoid an 0-2 start after last week’s 20-17 loss to Florida when the Aggies visit SMU for the first meeting of former Southwest Conference foes since 1990. SMU hasn’t beaten A&M since 1984.
SMU QB Garrett Gilbert vs. A&M defense. The former Texas quarterback will have his hands full with A&M’s attacking defense. The Aggies, who led the nation in sacks last season, piled up eight last week against the Gators to lead the nation in the category despite playing one fewer game than most teams. DE Damontre Moore had three of A&M’s sacks and leads the country in that category.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Texas A&M: QB Johnny Manziel became the first freshman quarterback to start a season opener for the Aggies since 1944 when he started against the Gators. He threw for 173 yards and ran for 60 yards and a score. Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin thought Manziel did some good things against Florida, but is looking for more in Manziel’s second career start.
SMU: RB Zach Line had 135 yards rushing last week against Baylor for his 16th 100-yard game. One of those came last year against the Aggies when he had 128 yards and a score. He had 60 yards rushing and two scores in SMU’s win last week over Stephen F. Austin. His 36 career rushing touchdowns rank third among active players.
FACTS & FIGURES
These teams first met in 1916. … They have met just twice since the end of the Southwest Conference in 1995. Though the Mustangs haven’t won since 1984, they did play to a 21-21 tie in 1994. … Texas A&M LB Jonathan Stewart had a career-high 17 tackles last week, including 11 solo. … SMU defensive line coach Bert Hill was A&M’s strength and conditioning coach from 1985-87 and in 1989. … Saturday’s game is the second of three straight home games for the Mustangs.
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