Texas A&M Aggies-Nebraska Cornhuskers: Who Wins the NCAA Farm?

Lake CruiseAnalyst INovember 16, 2010

KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 13:  The Texas A&M Aggies cheerleaders dance on the sidelines during the game against the Iowa State Cyclones on day 1 of the Big 12 Men's Basketball Tournament on March 13, 2008 at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Which American state has more irrigated farmland than any other? Which has the most consecutive football sellouts at home?

Texas is widely viewed as the most football-crazy state in the union, but the matter may be subjective.

A subjective analyst’s true test is whether or not his/her columns get reads when the analyzed game isn’t so good. On the other hand, if a game is good and reads are low, there a number of circumstances to weigh.

I’m a statistics guy—I weigh stats. In my attempt to get a feel for who will win this game, I reflected over every number. 

What did I come up with? This game could break down to who has the better farmers. 

Stop chuckling.

A&M stands for agriculture and mechanical. Some of Nebraska’s farmers are legends. Through a co-op, Husker Nation planters may donate proceeds from their crops in return for purchase priority on athletics tickets.

Growers in Nebraska have been known to “Grow Big Red”—donate food to Big Red’s growing football program. 

Humanitarianism at its finest, if you ask me. No wonder the football program at Nebraska is usually in a leading position.

With three interceptions, Nebraska senior defensive back Eric Hagg is tied for the conference lead. If he picks one or more, then Nebraska will probably beat A&M. The Aggies have two players with two interceptions apiece—good for fourth in the Big 12.

The stats related to this game tell an interesting story: The Aggies have a huge advantage in passing offense, but the Blackshirts are the Big 12’s No. 1 pass defense. 

NU is No. 2 in total defense in the conference. A&M’s Wrecking Crew is the conference’s No. 2 red-zone defense, while the Huskers are dead last.

The teams are about even when it comes to scoring per game—only two points separate them.

Nebraska is a much better rushing team, but don’t sleep on A&M’s run game. Cyrus Gray has rushed for over 100 yards in five straight games.

The stat standing out to me is A&M being the most penalized team in the conference: They have given up a total of five football fields off infractions. 

Statistics aside, Nebraska has not fared well against Texas’ Big 12 teams since 2005. They are 3-8 against Texas-based teams since ‘05; two of those wins were against Baylor and Robert Griffin III was injured in one of those games.

Texas Tech has beaten Nebraska three times since 2005.  Nebraska beat A&M in College Station in 2006, 28-27. 

In 2009, Nebraska lost to unranked Texas Tech in Lincoln. The Huskers beat Baylor in Waco, 20-10. NU lost to No. 2 Texas by one point in the Dr. Pepper Big 12 Championship. 

Where was the Big 12 title game played in ‘09? It was at the place I call the Jerry Dome—Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

It may be old news, but as I like to say—if you don’t know your past, then you may not know your future. This future matchup between A&M-Nebraska happens on Saturday in Texas.

In existence since 1892, Nebraska ranks No. 4 in America in terms of total college football victories. The state is No. 3 in corn for grain production.

Will the Huskers produce enough ground grain to beat Texas A&M, the next Lone Star State team in their sights?

The last time these two programs met was in 2007 at Memorial Stadium on a perfect Saturday afternoon for football. Both teams were unranked.

Marlon Lucky went off for an NU I-back record—13 catches for 125 yards. 

The Aggies’ running back/horse, Jorvorskie Lane, plowed through the Blackshirts for 130 yards and four touchdowns. Quarterback Stephen McGee ran for 167 yards. 

The Aggies raced for 344 yards on the ground and romped, 36-14. NU did defeat A&M at College Station, Texas, on Nov. 11, 2006.

Turnovers foiled the Huskers against A&M in 2007; they lost three fumbles. A&M didn’t commit any turnovers. 

The coaches were Bill Callahan and Dennis Franchione. This year, Bo Pelini steers the Nebraska tractor, while Mike Sherman drives A&M’s machinery.

According to Huskers.com, Nebraska leads the nation in irrigated farms. They also lead the nation with 98 Academic All-Americans and consecutive sellouts at home—304.

Since 1970, NU ranks No. 1 in football wins, No. 2 in national championships and No. 3 in Heisman Trophy Award winners. 

NU Athletic Director Tom Osborne is one of the most respected men in the United States. But, I cannot allow my respect for him to get in the way of my analysis.

Prediction: I picked NU to beat UT this season and they let me down. I’m going against the Husker grain this time. 

I pick A&M to win, 33-31, in College Station.