Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Crimson Crossover: Welcome to Manzielville

Alabama - 2013

Record: 1-0
Conference Record: 0-0
Last Game: Alabama 35 Virginia Tech 10

Texas A&M - 2013

Record: 2-0
Conference Record 0-0
Last Game: Texas A&M 65 Sam Houston State 28

History lesson

Series: Alabama leads 3-2 (First meeting in 1941)
Most Recent Meeting: Texas A&M 29 Alabama 24 (2012)

Setting the scene

Alabama vs. Texas A&M
Kyle Field – College Station, Texas
Betting Line: Alabama -7.5 (as of 9/10)


Beat writer of the week

Brent Zwerneman - Covers Texas A&M for the San Antonio Express-News and the Houston Chronicle.

Twitter: @BrentZwerneman

Follow Brent via Twitter to get the latest (breaking) news concerning the Texas A&M Aggies as they prepare for Alabama.

Texas A&M on the wire

With the hype surrounding Alabama/Texas A&M, Johnny Manziel views the encounter as simply another game.

>>>Manziel on Alabama: ‘It feels like another game. … Like Week 3 of the season.’

Due to Alabama's bye week, "Johnny Football" feels that A&M has the advantage.

>>>Manziel: Aggies have edge over Tide

Thanks to a "Manziel Cam" courtesy of CBS, if little Johnny picks his nose...the world will get a front row seat.

>>>Manziel Gets Own Camera
Several suspended Aggies will return for the contest against Alabama.

>>>Texas A&M's defense back at full strength for Tide game

While many have criticized the Texas A&M defense for allowing 31 points to Rice, and 28 to Sam Houston State, Nick Saban is on the opposite end of the spectrum.
The Manziel/McCarron "rematch" will usher in a touch of rarefied air.
Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin detailed the Aggie "injury report" during his Tuesday media obligation. Safety Floyd Raven will miss the 'Bama game due to a collarbone injury.
The Aggies expect wide receiver Ricky Seals-Jones to play against the Crimson Tide. Seals-Jones has been dealing with a knee issue. Offensive coordinator Clarence McKinney confirmed the news.
Millions of dollars...Aggie style

Who says old people aren't "hip" to the times? Texas A&M president R. Bowen Loftin probably has the "moves like Jagger" with energy to spare!

While R. Bowen Loftin has yet to give his best Johnny Manziel "air sig" impression, the A&M president has taken a moment to "make it rain"..."Johnny Football" style.

Money money...yeah yeah!

The naked truth about A&M

Welp. Hmm...

When it was a good idea...
When given time to ponder the notion...
The weekly quotable

Texas A&M offensive coordinator Clarence McKinney with a "coach speak" compliment for the Alabama defense. Kindly ignore the spelling error in the Zwerneman tweet.
The Crimson Elephant verdict

Is the Alabama offensive line really that bad...or is the Virginia Tech defensive line really one of the best in the nation?

Is the Texas A&M defense really that bad...or were the suspensions on that side of the ball really the difference?

When predicting a game of this magnitude, the above questions are important, yet, in the end, the verdict will be based upon personal conclusions.

While the Alabama offensive line is "green," the conclusion is that Virginia's Tech's defensive front is one of the best in the nation. Is that a fact? No. Is it of high probability? Yes.

The Texas A&M defense, the defense that allowed 31 points to Rice and 28 points to Sam Houston State, looks flimsy. Suspensions or not, both Rice and Sam Houston State are inferior opponents. Aggie fans should be worried about those point totals. A&M fans should also be worried about Alabama's offensive weapons against a "statistically proven" weak defense.

Johnny Manziel is the undisputed star, but too much weight is being placed on him in both directions.

Contrary to popular belief, Manziel didn't have a stellar game against Alabama in 2012...he had a stellar quarter. The Aggie defense, in the end, was the difference. A&M forced numerous turnovers against the Tide, including the game clinching interception.

The 2013 contest will be decided by the Alabama offensive line and the Texas A&M defense. Going by that assumption, the outcome of this game could be decided within the first 10 minutes of the contest.

An old adage will stay true in this game. Defense really does win championships!

Expect the Crimson Tide to give up some big plays, and perhaps look foolish at times in the shadow of Manziel, but in the end, 'Bama will simply be the better team...with the better defense.

Alabama isn't Rice, and they're certainly not FCS Sam Houston State. Unless the Aggies have a "Manziel-esque" performance on defense, they won't last four quarters.

Expect "Johnny Cam" to feature Manziel glaring helplessly at the Aggie defense.

Alabama 38
Texas A&M 23

*In true respect, if this prediction is wrong, The Crimson Elephant will be the first to give Texas A&M their just due. Guarantee it...*

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