EditorsNote: Subbed photo; minor fixes throughout
No. 8 Auburn’s defense stifled No. 17 Texas A&M until late in the game and the Tigers did just enough offensively to earn a 28-20 victory in a matchup of Southeastern Conference West Division title hopefuls Saturday in College Station, Texas.
The Tigers (4-0, 1-0 SEC) managed only 299 yards in total offense and gave up 391 to the Aggies (2-2, 0-1 SEC), but only 56 of that total came on the ground.
Quarterback Bo Nix was 12 of 20 passing for only 100 yards and got a big first down that allowed the Tigers to run out the clock after the Aggies got within one score.
Auburn running back JaTarvious Whitlow ran for 55 yards of his game-total 67 in the second half, with his 8-yard touchdown run putting the Tigers up 28-10 with 8:27 left in the game.
Quarterback Kellen Mond directed the Aggies to two touchdowns and a field goal in the fourth quarter. He finished 11-for-15 passing in the quarter and finished 31 of 49 for 335 yards.
Mond’s 15-yard touchdown pass to receiver Ainias Smith brought the Aggies within 28-20 with 2:12 left, but the Tigers recovered the onside kickoff.
The Tigers scored touchdowns — the first on receiver Anthony Schwartz’s 57-yard sprint on a reverse — on two of their first three possessions but led only 14-3 at halftime.
Auburn’s defense was so dominating at the line of scrimmage that the Aggies managed only 12 yards rushing in the first half. The Aggies’ deepest penetration was to Auburn’s 16-yard line but all they got out of it was Seth Small’s 33-yard field goal in the second quarter.
Texas A&M running back Isaiah Spiller fumbled on the Aggies’ first play of the second half. Nix then threw a 9-yard touchdown pass to receiver Seth Williams to put the Tigers up 21-3 with 12:05 remaining in the third quarter.
—Field Level Media