Game 31: Alabama at Texas A&M – Key Stats, Matchups, and More
After clinching the SEC Regular Season Title outright in a thrilling comeback win against Auburn Wednesday, the No. 2 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide (26-4, 16-1) is set to travel to College Station to take on the No. 24 ranked Texas A&M Aggies (22-8, 14-3) for the final game of the regular season.
Now, after Alabama took down Auburn in the season's 2nd edition of the IBOB, the game has lost all of its implications in the SEC standings, as both teams are locked into the first and second seeds respectively.
With nothing on the line except morale, let's look at a few key matchups and stats for Saturday's game.
Alabama Moneyline: -125
Texas A&M Moneyline: +105
Spread: Alabama -1.5
Alabama's Statistical Leaders:
PPG - Brandon Miller, 19.6
RPG - Noah Clowney, 8.2
APG - Jahvon Quinerly, 3.7
SPG - Mark Sears, 1.3
BPG - Charles Bediako, 1.6
FG% - Charles Bediako, 63.1
*Nick Pringle (88.1%) does not qualify*
FT% - Brandon Miller, 84.7
3P% - Brandon Miller, 41.7
Texas A&M's Statistical Leaders:
PPG - Wade Taylor IV, 15.9
RPG - Dexter Dennis, 5.6
APG - Wade Taylor IV, 4.2
SPG - Wade Taylor IV, 1.8
BPG - Dexter Dennis, 0.6
FG% - Julius Marble, 55.6
FT% - Wade Taylor IV, 86.1
3P% - Manny Obaseki, 38.5
- Alabama didn't allow an SEC team to score 70 or more on them up until Feb. 22 against South Carolina. The 70 mark has been broken in three straight games, two of which went into overtime.
- Alabama is ranked 4th in scoring offense while Texas A&M is ranked 130th
- As of late, Brandon Miller has been on a tear, averaging 27.3 points on 44.4% from the field throughout three games.
- Texas A&M is still the only SEC team Alabama hasn't beaten under Nate Oats
Arguably the biggest matchup for Saturday's game is Texas A&M's Wade Taylor IV vs. Alabama's Jaden Bradley. The Tide's freshman guard is one of the best defenders in the SEC, forcing elite guards such as Houston's Marcus Sasser, and Kentucky's Cason Wallace to poor games. On the other hand, Wade Taylor IV has been one of the biggest offensive threats in the SEC this season, ranking sixth in points per game and third in assists.
Viewers should also keep an eye on the Aggies' Julius Marble and the Tide's Noah Clowney Saturday, as winning the paint battle could be one of the keys to victory in Alabama's regular-season finale.
The Aggies will be looking to take advantage of an Alabama team that has taken a physical and emotional toll over the past couple of weeks. Additionally, taking down Alabama on Saturday could propel A&M to a top-6 seed, maybe even higher with a strong performance in the SEC tournament.
After an emotionally and physically grueling week for Alabama that consisted of three games Alabama won by a combined 10 points, two of which required five extra minutes to determine a winner. The Tide will be hoping to snag a win that doesn't give Alabama fans a few extra gray hairs.
With this said, this Alabama team has shown an incredible amount of grit and toughness for such a young team, and I believe the Tide will continue to roll Saturday, taking down the Aggies 75-67.