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Preview: No. 1 Alabama travels to square off with No. 6 Texas A&M

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No. 1 Alabama will square off with No. 6 Texas A&M Saturday in College Station, Tex. (abc3340.com) No. 1 Alabama will square off with No. 6 Texas A&M Saturday in College Station, Tex. (abc3340.com)

Preview of No. 1 Alabama at No. 6 Texas A&M on Saturday in College Station, Tex.

Matchup: 

No. 1 Alabama (1-0) at No. 6 Texas A&M (2-0)

Time:  2:40 p.m.

TV:  CBS

Line: Alabama by 7 ½.

Series record: Alabama 3-2.

Last meeting:  Nov. 10, 2012 in Tuscaloosa, Ala. -- Texas A&M 29, Alabama 24.

WHAT'S AT STAKE

This is the first game of the season with true national championship implications. Alabama is looking forward to the rematch after the Aggies handed the Crimson Tide its only loss in last year's national championship season. The Aggies are out to prove that last year's game, which helped Johnny Manziel become the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy, wasn't a fluke.

Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel during the Aggies 29-24 win over Alabama in November 2012. (abc3340.com)

KEY MATCHUP

Manziel and A&M's up-tempo offense vs. the Alabama defense. Alabama coach Nick Saban has complained about up-tempo offenses like the one Texas A&M uses. That doesn't matter to A&M coach Kevin Sumlin, who laughed and said: "we're going to go as fast as we possibly can," when asked about it. Manziel threw for 253 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 92 more to help A&M to the 29-24 victory in Tuscaloosa last year, and will likely need a similar performance Saturday.

Matchup

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Alabama:

WR/KR/PR Christion Jones. Jones earned SEC special teams player of the week honors in Week 1 after a 72-yard punt return for a touchdown and a 94-yard kickoff return for another score in Alabama's opener. He also had 47 yards receiving with a third score to finish with 256 all-purpose yards.

Alabama wide receiver Christion Jones (22) runs past Virginia Tech defensive end Matt Roth (91) and linebacker Chase Williams (36) on a touchdown run from a punt return during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Aug. 31, 2013, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)

Texas A&M:

CB Deshazor Everett. Saturday will be Everett's first full game after he sat out the first half of Texas A&M's opener serving a suspension for violating team rules before drawing his targeting penalty and another suspension in the second half against Rice. He intercepted Alabama's A.J. McCarron near the end zone in the fourth quarter to help secure win by the Aggies last season.

FACTS & FIGURES

Saturday is Alabama's second trip to College Station and the first since 1988. ... Alabama has a 15-game winning streak away from Tuscaloosa, which is the longest active streak in the FBS. They haven't lost away from home since Nov. 6, 2010 at LSU. ... The Aggies have won eight straight games. ... Alabama is 41-0 since 2008 when it has fewer turnovers than its opponent. ... The Crimson Tide defense has held teams to less than 300 yards of offense in 53 of Saban's 82 games. ... The Aggies are fifth in the country in total offense by averaging 600 yards a game.

Link:  5 things to watch for in Week 3 matchups in the SEC

By the Numbers:

 ALATA&M
W-L 1-0 2-0
Avg Points 35.0 58.5
Avg Points Allowed 10.0 29.5
Home Record 0-0 2-0
Road Record 1-0 0-0
Division Record 0-0 0-0
Conference Record 0-0 0-0

Team Averages & NCAA Ranks

OffenseTeamPer Game Average / NCAA Rank
Total Yards  
 
206.0 / 124th
 
 
600.0 / 5th
Passing Yards  
 
110.0 / 118th
 
 
380.5 / 6th
Rushing Yards  
 
96.0 / 108th
 
 
219.5 / 38th
Points Scored  
 
35.0 / 48th
 
 
58.5 / 4th

Passing Leaders

 
AlabamaCMP%YDSTDINT
A. McCarron 43.5 110 1 1
 
Texas A&MCMP%YDSTDINT
J. Manziel 69.4 497 6 1
M. Joeckel 73.7 190 1 0

Rushing Leaders

 
AlabamaCARYDSAVGTD
T. Yeldon 17 75 4.4 1
A. Tenpenny 6 24 4.0 0
 
Texas A&MCARYDSAVGTD
B. Malena 22 173 7.9 2
T. Carson 23 127 5.5 4

Receiving Leaders

 
AlabamaRECYDSAVGTD
C. Jones 2 47 23.5 1
A. Cooper 4 38 9.5 0
 
Texas A&MRECYDSAVGTD
M. Evans 13 239 18.4 2
R. Seals-Jones 3 84 28.0 1
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