Texas has to stop the run, deal with Kyle Field


This coming Thursday will mark the final chapter of the historic Lone Star Showdown between the Longhorns and Aggies. While Texas has the upper hand in the rivalry with 75 wins over Texas A&M’s 37, the Aggies have given the Longhorns fits in recent years.

Since 2009, the A&M has averaged 36.5 points against the Longhorn defense, almost twice as many points allowed on average since 2002 (18.7). With the Texas A&M offense posing a greater threat with its battalion of talented receivers and backs, there’s no doubt the Aggies can put up some points. Lets take a look at — what else? — the stats.

Last Thanksgiving, Texas A&M marched into Austin and narrowly defeated Texas, 24-17. Aggie running back Cyrus Gray exploded for 223 yards on the ground with two touchdowns, including what turned out to be a game-clinching 48-yarder in the third quarter. Texas running back Cody Johnson performed well, carrying the ball 14 times for 107 yards, but couldn’t find the end zone. The Aggies rushed for 238 yards, which amounted to 70 percent greater than the Longhorns’ team total of 140.

Texas A&M also won the turnover battle, only coughing the ball up twice to Texas’ four. The Aggies sealed the game with a fourth-quarter pick of quarterback Garrett Gilbert by outside linebacker Von Miller.

Skip back a year. In 2009, the Longhorns traveled to College Station, with national title hopes at stake. Texas was met with a 532-yard offensive showcase by Texas A&M quarterback Jerrod Johnson and company. Luckily for Texas, its own quarterback Colt McCoy came ready to play as well, passing for 304 yards and four touchdowns, along with 175 yards rushing. The Longhorns escaped College Station with a 49-39 victory.

There’s a reason why teams struggle at Kyle Field, the site of this year’s game: It’s loud, compact and, quite frankly, very intimidating. You’d expect it to be even louder this Thursday for the last Longhorn-Aggie go-around.

Printed on Tuesday, November 22, 2011 as:Aggies offense, home turf has given Horns fits recently