The AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl will have the Texas A&M Aggies battling the Kansas State Wildcats. In our 2016 Texas Bowl free pick, we note that the Aggies may have something to prove after their fall out of the top 25 when this season they were once ranked fourth in the nation. The Wildcats come into this game looking to seal a solid victory.
The Texas A&M Aggies (8-4 Overall, 4-4 Southeastern Conference) managed a fourth place finish in the SEC West. They began the season with six wins in a row. Then they went into a funk, going 2-4, losing #1 Alabama 33-14, Mississippi State 35-28, and Mississippi 29-28. They were beaten badly by LSU in their final game. That score was 54-39.
In the Big 12, the Kansas State Wildcats (8-4 Overall, 6-3 Big 12) finished fourth. The Cats seemed to stutter from win to loss to win to loss all season. That is until the end, when they managed to put together a three-game winning streak. In that time, they beat Baylor 42-21, Kansas 34-19, and TCU 30-6.
Texas A&M Aggies
The Texas A&M Aggies will most likely have their number one quarterback, Trevor Knight (51.9 COMP%, 15 TDs, 6 INTs), on the field. Knight was sidelined for a few games, but did play most of the final game of the season. The Aggies are scoring on average 35.4 PPG. Knight, who ran the ball 94 times for 594 yards and 10 touchdowns, is a much-needed dual threat. RB Trayveon Williams (147 ATT, 1,024 YDs, 7.0 AVG, 8 TDs) is the club’s premium ground weapon. Keith Ford (116 ATT, 583 YDs, 5.0 AVG, 5 TDs) is also a potent rushing threat. There are two primary receivers, Josh Reynolds (49 REC, 885 YDs, 18.1 AVG, 10 TDs) and Christian Kirk (77 REC, 842 YDs, 10.9 AVG, 9 TDs).
The Aggies are holding teams to 23.8 PPG and have a red zone defense mark of 73.58%. They’ve got an impressive 36 sacks and 103 TFL. In addition, the defense has 50 QB hurries, 55 PD, and 12 INTs. They have forced 15 fumbles and have a plus-five turnover margin. This is a defense that can harass quarterbacks and win games.
Kansas State Wildcats
Kansas State QB Jesse Ertz (56.6 COMP%, 8 TDs, 4 INTs) would just assume rush than pass. He is the team’s leading rusher with 159 carries for 945 yards and 10 touchdowns. He’s averaging a healthy 5.9 YPA. The Wildcats are averaging 32.2 PPG. RB Alex Barnes has run the ball 56 times, averaging 7.9 YPA and making six touchdowns. Receivers Byron Pringle and Dominique Heath both have 35-plus catches, and each has scored three times.
The Kansas State defense, which has posted 30 sacks, 15 interceptions, and 15 QB hurries, knows how to upset passing games. They have defended 40 passes, made 67 TFL, and forced 12 fumbles. The Wildcats are offering up on average 21.8 PPG. Their red zone defense is at 77.42% and they have an impressive turnover margin of plus 11.
2016 Texas Bowl Free Pick
The Aggies, who bring a more dynamic offense and a bit tighter defense than the Wildcats, are at -3.0. We like that spread. Our 2016 Texas Bowl free pick is Texas A&M at -3.0. The over/under is 56.5. We are taking the over.
The 2016 AdvoCare V100 Texas Bowl will be played on Dec. 28 at 9 p.m. ET at NRG Stadium in Houston. TX. It will be broadcast by ESPN.