Texas A&M vs. Vanderbilt Betting Odds & Pick: Could Aggies Challenge for SEC West Title? (Saturday, Sept. 26)
George Walker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Quartney Davis.
- Texas A&M and Vanderbilt throw down at 7:30 p.m. ET as part of the college football evening slate.
- Dillon Essma breaks down Saturday’s matchup, which really only has one key question of interest: Will A&M pitch a shutout?
- Check out his betting guide and pick for Aggies vs. Commodores below.
Texas A&M vs. Vanderbilt Odds
|Texas A&M Odds||-31.5 [BET NOW]|
|Vanderbilt Odds||+31.5 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||46 [BET NOW]|
|Time||Saturday, 7:30 p.m. ET|
The Aggies welcome Vanderbilt to College Station on Saturday to kick off Week 1 of SEC conference play. The Commodores’ expectations have to be pretty low given the recent state of the Vanderbilt program. Texas A&M, on the other hand, is the overwhelming favorite and will want to start its season off with a strong showing,
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Texas A&M Aggies
Texas A&M finished last season with an 8-5 overall record, albeit with a brutal gauntlet of a schedule. Not only did the Aggies play the likes of Georgia, Alabama, and LSU, but they also had to play Clemson in the non-conference.
This is Jimbo Fisher’s third season in College Station, so Fisher should have the trending upward in the conference now that he has two full recruiting cycles under his belt.
The Aggies offense finished third in the SEC in rushing success rate and finished fifth in passing success rate last season. That’s a solid foundation to build on in Year 3 of Fisher’s tenure, and A&M is sufficiently deep that it’s reasonable to expect improvement.
Texas A&M brings back 17 of 22 total starters from last season: Eight starters on offense and nine on defense. Starting quarterback Kellen Mond is back, along with the team’s top running back, wide receiver, and four starting offensive linemen. I would expect a strong year with Mond and his weapons returning.
The Aggies defense led the SEC in stuff rate last season and ranked fourth in defensive-back havoc. With nine starters returning, including each of the team’s top four tacklers from 2019, this defense could be really special. I think Jimbo will have them prepared and ready to go on Saturday.
By almost any objective measure, Vanderbilt clearly struggled last year en route to a 3-9 overall record for the 2019 season. The Commodores ranked dead-last on both sides of the ball in SP+ among SEC teams. Vandy’s defense had a very difficult time getting off the field, ranking last among SEC teams in creating havoc and defensive rushing success rate.
The Commodores do return all 11 starters on that side of the ball, so you’d expect some degree of improvement for such a cohesive group. But it will be an uphill climb in this heavyweight conference.
The offense returns just five starters, with basically zero experience at the QB position. Vandy must also replace each of its top two WRs from 2019.
The only hope for the Commodores is that their defense improves with the experience they have back, and that they can run the ball decently well until they fortify the QB position.
They did finish fourth in rushing explosiveness last season, but only ranked around the middle of the pack in rushing success rate. So, it will likely be another very tough year for Vanderbilt.
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Betting Analysis & Pick
Texas A&M has the edge in basically every statistical advantage in this matchup, which is why they are favored by over four touchdowns. I expect the Aggies is be pretty sharp this year, and I really like the continuity they have back on both sides of the ball.
Vandy should struggle offensively given its limited returning production, especially at QB. That cannot feel comfortable for the Commodores when they stare across the line at A&M’s front-seven.
Texas A&M will win big — the Aggies might even pitch a shutout.
Pick: Texas A&M -30.5 (-110). Play up to -31 (-120).