Odds and Analysis
Texas A&M fans expect to see a revived group going into this season and have their sights set on a double-digit win season, something that has eluded the team in two straight seasons. The expectation for this team is not unwarranted though. The Aggies added defensive coordinator John Chavis, who is expected to turn around a group that has been consistently bad the past few seasons. Chavis spent the last six years leading LSU’s always-dominant defense. If the defense can turn around, at least a little bit, that may be enough with the firepower this offense has.
Texas A&M is listed at odds of 70 to 1 to win the National Title and 16 to 1 to win the SEC. 5 Dimes Sportsbook also lists the odds for the Aggies Game against Arizona State on September 5th. That Game will be played in Houston and the Aggies are a -5.5 point favorite.
Kyle Allen goes into the season as the expected starter after the experiment of Kenny Hill last season. Allen really showed what he could do at the end of last season, including five total touchdowns in A&M’s Liberty Bowl win against West Virginia. He won’t have the same receivers to work with, but that shouldn’t affect too much as this is a system that can make plenty of average receivers look better than they are.
The biggest question for Texas A&M’s offense will be the running Game, which didn’t do a whole lot last year. Despite losing a couple studs on the line, the OL should be just fine as has been the case in recent seasons. The backfield is suddenly crowded, and any number of guys could come to the forefront. James White has been the name on everyone’s list to make an impact at running back even with Tra Carson and Brandon Williams there. If White, or even the other two can make a bigger impact than last year, this offense could be even better than a year ago, which is kind of scary for defenses.
As for the Aggies defense, Chavis automatically brings expectation along with him and he’ll have some tools to work with. The Aggies didn’t lose a whole lot from last year’s group. That may not mean much from a bad defense, but at least they have experience. The one guy that could become a force with Chavis is defensive end Myles Garrett. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see him on the All-SEC team by season’s end.
Texas A&M didn’t have a spring Game because of their stadium renovations, but Kyle Field will be all set for their home opener against Ball State. Unfortunately, the Aggies have to open the season at a neutral site against Arizona State. The Sun Devils usually have a well-balanced offense that gives most defenses trouble. We’ll get a good idea of where the A&M defense stands after that Game. A bonus for the Aggies is that they get South Carolina (home) and Vanderbilt (away) out of the East, probably the easiest cross-division matchups of any SEC West team. A couple more positives include home Games against Alabama and Auburn. But on the road is where their defense will have to step up against the like of Arkansas, Ole Miss and LSU. Conveniently, none of those offenses are rated all that high. That final Game against LSU will be the return of Chavis, which should be some fun. If Chavis lives up to his name as a top defensive coordinator, this team could easily reach nine wins, if not more, and contend for the SEC West title.
2015 Texas A&M Football Schedule
Sept. 5 vs. Arizona State (NRG Stadium)
Sept 12 vs. Ball State
Sept. 19 vs. Nevada
Sept. 26 at Arkansas
Oct. 3 vs. Mississippi State
Oct. 17 vs. Alabama
Oct. 24 at Ole Miss
Oct. 31 vs. South Carolina
Nov. 7 vs. Auburn
Nov. 14 vs. Western Carolina
Nov. 21 at Vanderbilt
Nov. 28 at LSU