Tennessee vs. Texas A&M - Predictions For Vols & Aggies First-Ever Regular Season Meeting

Tennessee Volunteers Carry A Teammate in Shoulders

Willie Bee

Friday, October 7, 2016 2:48 PM UTC

Friday, Oct. 7, 2016 2:48 PM UTC

They've rallied for two huge wins the last two weeks, and now the Tennessee Volunteers are TD underdogs on the NCAA football odds in another huge game at Texas A&M.


Given the current state of conferences, if there's a more crucial 3-week stretch in any league than the next three SEC Saturdays, I sure can't find one.

Welcome to How the SEC was Won, or at least how the conference championship was determined. Three teams remain undefeated -- league play and overall -- and that trio butt heads over the course of the next 15 days. Five more teams have just one loss, but we won't worry about them for now.

Instead, we'll focus our attention on Kyle Field where the Texas A&M Aggies host the Tennessee Volunteers in a top 10 fight. The 3:30 PM (ET) contest will be broadcast by CBS with Intertops, one of less than a dozen sports books with an A rating at SBR, installing the Aggies as 7 point favorites. The game total can generally be found at 57½.

Top-ranked Alabama, the chalkiest pick on NCAA football futures to win the SEC, is on the road at Arkansas this week while the Vols and Ags tangle in College Station. Week 7 finds the Crimson Tide in Knoxville to take on Tennessee followed by a Week 8 matchup in Tuscaloosa against Texas A&M. Those three -- A&M, 'Bama & UT -- are the last of the SEC unbeatens, setting things up very nicely for the very near future.


Ags 12th In Country Allowing Just 15.4 PPG

It hasn't been easy, and certainly not pretty at times, but Butch Jones has the Vols off to a perfect 5-0 start, 2-0 in the SEC East where they were the top favorites before the season started. Tennessee had to go to overtime to be Appalachian State in the season opener, and also struggled against Ohio two weeks later. It looked like they would fall to Florida in the SEC opener, but the Volunteers rallied to win by 10 then rallied again to beat Georgia on the road after trailing 24-14 going into the final quarter.

In what will be their fourth SEC game of the season, it's the first one the Aggies will have played in College Station. A&M is 6-9 at Kyle Field in SEC play so far, winning just twice in the last seven in front of the 12th man. Kevin Sumlin's squad failed to beat the NCAA football odds for the first time this season last week in a 24-13 decision at South Carolina, that game tied 7-all in the first half with the Aggies favored by almost three touchdowns.


First-Ever Regular Season Meeting Between Vols & Aggies

Now in their fifth season in the conference, Texas A&M finally gets Tennessee on the schedule. The only two previous meetings came in bowl games, the Volunteers winning them both. In 2004, it was a 38-7 wipeout over an A&M team that was actually favored by 4½. That matchup came some 47 years after a Gator Bowl clash in 1957, Tennessee coming away with a 3-0 triumph against a Bear Bryant coached Aggie side.

Tennessee comes in with the best health check, the Vols expected to have tailback Jalen Hurd available after he was injured late in the Georgia game. The Aggies will not have standout defensive end Myles Garrett at 100% as he continues to play on a sore ankle. They might also be thin at wideout where both Speedy Noil and Ricky Seals-Jones are questionable.

I'm not going to BS you about my free college football pick, and if you've been following me here this season you already know what it is. Fading my beloved Aggies so far has produced just one win in four tries (did not play the Prairie View line), but it has produced four Texas A&M outright victories. Fade me if you wish, but I will be fading Texas A&M.

Season: 11-14-1 (+3.70)

Free College Football Pick: Tennessee +7 
Best Line Offered: at Intertops

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