By Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal
The offense made big plays, sustained drives and converted third downs with 9 for 19 efficiency. Bo Wallace was on target and had zip on his passes. Jeff Scott had his second 100-yard game of the season, and there was good production from a number of receivers.
The Rebels defense forced five turnovers and the special teams forced another.
Freshman Mike Hilton drew a start and responded with two sacks and a forced fumble.
Although the Rebels’ defense had four sacks, there were too many free-lance yards given up to quarterback Johnny Manziel, and running back Ben Malena was able to hit a couple of big runs, things the Rebels had not been allowing lately.
Keys To Victory
Evaluating the keys to victory in Saturday’s GameDay section:
1. Controlled rush: Mixed results here. The Rebels had four sacks in the game but allowed A&M’s Manziel to scramble for 129 yards including a 29-yard touchdown.
2. Execute on offense: There was good execution much of the night, as the Rebels rolled up 464 yards.
There was also failed execution at times, most notably the two interceptions thrown by Bo Wallace and the inability to gain an inch on fourth down.
Nothing about the fourth down attempt – which could have allowed the Rebels to run out the clock – worked, starting with the play call.
3. Make it a fourth-quarter game:Indeed it was. The Rebels got what they wanted but couldn’t finish. Hugh Freeze earlier in the week separated reaching the fourth quarter and finishing as two distinctly different hills still to climb for his rebuilding program. The Rebels had more than ample opportunity to climb both hills against Texas A&M.
Cody Prewitt: The sophomore safety showed a knack for big plays in camp and had a hand in four of the Aggies six turnovers with two forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and an interception.
For a team that played very well for much of the 60 minutes, the finish was sub-standard, and the Rebels paid for it with yet another SEC loss.
The question that won’t be answered for a week – will there be lingering effects as a vulnerable Auburn team visits this weekend?