With a spot in the College Football Playoff on the line The Tennessee Volunteers and the No. 5 Texas A&M Aggies are set to square off in a SEC matchup at noon ET on Saturday at Neyland Stadium. As the regular NCAAF season draws to a close, the Aggies are ranked no. 5 in the polls and will have a bowl game when the season is done.
Texas A&M vs Tennessee Broadcast
Date: Saturday, December 19
Game Time: 12:00 ET
Venue: Neyland Stadium, Knoxville, TN
Live Stream: WATCH FREE HERE
Today they will go up against the Volunteers and will likely walk away the winners. If Texas A&M wins today and other games go in their favor, they will have a good idea of their upcoming bowl game.
The Volunteers are 3-6 overall and 1-3 at home, while A&M is 7-1 overall and 3-1 on the road. It’s just the fourth time these two programs have met and Tennessee has won two of the first three head-to-head mathups.
While the game doesn’t have an SEC title on the line, the outcome could have significant College Football Playoff ramifications. Texas A&M, currently the No. 5 team in the nation according to the playoff committee’s rankings, has numerous paths to a top-4 finish to the regular season and a chance to compete for a national title. However all of those paths require the Aggies to take care of business against the Volunteers on Saturday.
Meanwhile Tennessee has its own issues to contend with as its 2020 season concludes. Months after signing head coach Jeremy Pruitt to an extension, the program appears headed in the wrong direction. The Volunteers went on a six-game losing streak in the middle of its schedule, ending the skid against a Vanderbilt program that had already fired its head coach.
It remains unclear whether Tennessee will give Pruitt another season. The recency of the extension probably helps his case, but a strong performance against A&M would go a long way toward quieting his loudest critics until 2021.
Why Texas A&M Will Win
It plays an early game just as the Big Ten Championship gets going and before the ACC and SEC championships. There won’t be any scoreboard watching, but if Northwestern can stun the world against Ohio State, there’s a chance A&M can move right on up and into the No. 4 CFP spot.
If it can destroy Tennessee, and if Notre Dame beats Clemson, it’ll have a beef. If Clemson blows out Notre Dame, A&M might have an interesting argument that it really is one of the four best teams.
But again, none of College Football Playoff ramifications will matter without a dominant performance by the Aggies. The offensive line and the running game were amazing against South Carolina and Auburn over the last few weeks, the D leads the SEC in third down stops, the O is third in the nation in third down conversions, and the team owns the time of possession battle.
Why Tennessee Will Win
The secondary is having a rough go, but up front, the Vols allowed just 72 yards on the ground against Florida and Vanderbilt in the last two games, giving away just 1.5 yards per carry. Georgia and Arkansas had some success, and Alabama went Alabama with five rushing scores, but no one has hit 200 yards on the ground against this D.
Offensively, the Vols have something in Harrison Bailey. He hit 14-of-18 pass for 207 yards and two scores in the blowout win over Vandy, he’s the freshman quarterback who should grow into the job – if he doesn’t get pulled again.