South Carolina, Texas A&M looking to ease fans frustrated with disappointing seasons
Thu, Oct 26, 2023
NCAAF News (AP)
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) - South Carolina (2-5, 1-4 SEC) at Texas A&M (4-3, 2-2), Saturday, 12 p.m. ET (ESPN).
Line: Texas A&M by 14,1/2 according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
Series record: Texas A&M leads 8-1.
WHAT'S AT STAKE
A momentary period of calm for two angry and frustrated fan bases. Both South Carolina and Texas A&M had hopes of contending in their divisional races, the Gamecocks in the SEC East and the Aggies in the West. But it's been disappointing starts for each. South Carolina must win its final three starting in College Station to avoid the first losing SEC record in coach Shane Beamer's three seasons. T exas A&M would need some Western chaos to rejoin the mix for Atlanta.
South Carolina QB Spencer Rattler vs. Texas A&M's defense. Rattler, the fifth-year passer, is having a stellar season amid the team's struggles. He's thrown for 277 yards a game with 11 touchdowns. But the Aggies are tops in the country with 29 sacks and linebacker Edgerrin Cooper leads the SEC with 13.5 tackles for loss.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
South Carolina: RB Mario Anderson has been a wonder since joining the Gamecocks from Division II Newberry. Anderson has run for 355 yards and two TDs in his past four games and jazzed up a ground game that ranks last in the SEC in yards per game.
Texas A&M: WR Ainias Smith has been hard to stop on offense or special teams. The graduate wideout is 13th in the SEC with 64.4 yards receiving per game and fifth with 108.6 all-purpose yards per game.
FACTS & FIGURES
Texas A&M had won the first eight games in the series since joining the SEC. South Carolina got its first victory, 30-24, last season. ... The Gamecocks have not won a game in Texas since defeating the Longhorns, 27-21, in 1957. ... These teams play for the Bonham Trophy, named for James Bonham who fought at the Alamo and was a graduate of South Carolina. ... Texas A&M is 10th among Power Five teams in pass defense, giving up just 172.7 yards a game through the air. ... Even though the SEC is getting rid of divisions and adding Oklahoma and Texas next season, the Aggies will play at South Carolina in 2024. ... The Gamecocks are without two of their top receivers in injured Antwane "Juice" Wells and Ahmarean Brown. A third, Xavier Legette, could be limited after getting hurt in a loss at No. 16 Missouri last week.
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