Texas A&M vs. Ole Miss: 10 Things We Learned from the Aggies' Win
It was not easy, but Texas A&M did what it had to do and picked up its 10th consecutive win on the road, knocking off Ole Miss 41-38.
This was one of those games when the team with the ball last was going to come out on top.
That was exactly the case as Texas A&M kicker Josh Lambo hit a 33-yard field goal as time expired to give the Aggies the victory.
The win kept the slim SEC title hopes of Texas A&M alive. The Aggies improved to 5-1 and Ole Miss fell to 3-3.
The SEC schedule is now in full swing with a lot more to come over the next two months.
At the halfway point in the season we have learned a lot about these two teams, but what specifically did Saturday night point out?
Here are 10 things we learned in the Texas A&M victory over Ole Miss.
*Stats are according to NCAA.com.
Winning Without Mike Evans Is Possible
Texas A&M wide receiver Mike Evans came into the game with 691 yards and five touchdowns on 28 receptions.
Ole Miss held him in check. He finished the game with only 46 yards on four receptions, with those catches all coming later in the game.
That was his worst game of the season, but it might have been a good thing for the Aggies.
Proving they can win without their star receiver having a monster game is a good sign.
Now the Aggies hope he does not have a performance like that again.
Josh Lambo Is a Big-Game Kicker
Josh Lambo was just named the starter by head coach Kevin Sumlin in the past few weeks. After the victory over Ole Miss, it is easy to see that Sumlin made the right decision.
Lambo hit 2-of-3 field goals, but more importantly knocked in a 33-yard field goal as time expired to give the Aggies a dramatic come-from-behind-victory.
A lot of college kickers do not handle the pressure as well as most would think. That does not appear to be the case for Lambo. He had no problem hitting the winning field goal in what is likely the most important moment of his Texas A&M career.
Laquon Treadwell Is Ready to Be a Star
Ole Miss freshman wide receiver Laquon Treadwell is very talented. He had some solid games early in the season, but on Saturday he broke out in a big way.
Treadwell caught eight passes for 77 yards and two touchdowns. He reached the end zone for the first time all season.
Coming into the game he had 24 receptions and 250 yards in five games.
This was his best overall performance. Bo Wallace and Barry Brunetti now have a nice target to go along with Donte Moncrief.
Trey Williams Is the Most Explosive Player on the Roster
Sophomore running back Trey Williams had not seen much action this season. The undersized running back only received six carries through the first four weeks, but did tote the rock nine times against Arkansas.
He received seven carries against Ole Miss and did not disappoint. Williams totaled 50 yards, but more importantly he got to the end zone twice with some spectacular runs.
Johnny Manziel could make a strong argument at quarterback and Mike Evans is very talented at receiver, but when it comes to explosiveness, Williams has everybody beat.
This guy is a threat to score every time he touches the ball, similar to De'Anthony Thomas at Oregon or Lache Seastrunk at Baylor.
A Two-Headed Monster Could Be Effective at Quarterback
Bo Wallace is the unquestioned starter at Ole Miss, but against Texas A&M head coach Hugh Freeze might have discovered a hidden gem in senior Barry Brunetti.
He did not play much his first few seasons at Ole Miss, but had the best game of his career against the Aggies.
Brunetti finished the game 3-of-4 passing for 28 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed for 24 yards on five carries.
Wallace completed 22-of-36 passes with three touchdowns and an interception. He also picked up 27 yards on the ground on nine rushes.
There is no doubt that Wallace is the starter, but Brunetti played well in spots and jump started the offense in the second half.
Ole Miss might have found something with this combination.
Travis Labhart Might Be a Factor Down the Stretch
Coming into the game against Ole Miss, wide receiver Travis Labhart only had three receptions for 52 yards and a touchdown.
On Saturday night he led the team with eight receptions for 97 yards. No question this was the best games of his collegiate career.
It is not often that a senior first makes his impact midway through his final season, but that might end up being the case for the Aggies and Labhart.
His huge game was one reason why Texas A&M came away with the road victory.
There Are a Lot of Weapons at Wide Receiver for Ole Miss
The talent at wide receiver for Texas A&M has been well documented. The group is one of the best in the country. One team not far behind is Ole Miss.
Leading the way for the Rebels is Donte Moncrief. Moncrief is a junior and most experienced of the group. He is leading the team in yards but was held in check by the Aggies. He finished with only one catch for three yards.
The younger players picked it up in his absence. Freshman tight end Even Engram caught three passes for 26 yards and a touchdown. Fellow freshman Laquon Treadwell hauled in eight catches for 77 yards and two scores.
Sophomore running back Jaylen Walton had an impressive 50-yard touchdown reception. He finished the day with three catches for 61 yards.
This group continues to develop and by next year could be one of the best in the country.
Long Replays Are Sometimes Worth It
Instant replay is good to have, but a lot of replays seem like a waste of time.
That was not the case in this game. Two Ole Miss defensive players were hit with targeting penalties and temporarily ejected from the contest.
The refs looked at the replays and allowed the players to stay in the game in both instances. That was clearly the right call. Without replay those players would have been ejected. In the case of Trae Elston it came very early in the first quarter, so it could have been costly.
While replay can sometimes seem like a drag, when it comes to a player being ejected, it is best to take a second look.
The Texas A&M Defense Still Needs to Improve to Knock off the Big Boys
The offense has never been a question mark for the Aggies, but the defense has had its issues all season long.
That was the case once against against Ole Miss.
Texas A&M allowed 462 yards of total offense, including 329 through the air to a team that was averaging less than 244 yards a game passing.
When the Aggies have played good teams, the defense has struggled. If this squad plans on knocking off the likes of LSU and Missouri to finish out the season, it is going to have to get better on the defensive side of the ball.
It almost came back and cost them against Ole Miss.
Johnny Manziel Only Needs One Healthy Leg
He came out for one play, but was then ready to go for the rest of the game.
There were a few instances throughout the night where Manziel looked a little gimpy, but for the most part it was the same Heisman Trophy winner who has been wreaking havoc on SEC defenses for nearly two years now.
Manziel certainly was not 100 percent, but with as much talent as he has, playing on one healthy leg is all he needs.
He finished with 468 total yards, seven more than the Ole Miss offense. He passed for 346 yards and rushed for 122 more.
No doubt Manziel can dominate on only one healthy leg.
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