Texas A&M vs. Alabama Odds & Picks: The Early Bet to Make for Jimbo Fisher vs. Nick Saban
Don Juan Moore/Getty Images. Pictured from left: Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban and Texas A&M Aggies head coach Jimbo Fisher.
Texas A&M vs. Alabama
As if college football couldn’t come any sooner, Jimbo Fisher dropped a bomb on us by lashing back at Nick Saban in his Thursday press conference.
After weeks of Saban making snide comments about Texas A&M’s No. 1 recruiting class, Jimbo finally responded, and he did not hold back.
Texas A&M HC Jimbo Fisher just fired back at Nick Saban for saying they "bought" recruits.
Fisher calls Saban a "narcissist" and says he won't take his call.
"We built him up to be this czar of football. Go dig into his past." pic.twitter.com/iG4UQ4BH3I
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) May 19, 2022
Take a drink every time Jimbo says “despicable.”
Oct. 8 has now turned into must-watch TV with today’s events being similar to a WWE promo. The best part about this? You can already bet on it with Game of the Year lines already out on various sportsbooks.
Out With the Old, In With the New
It’s safe to say Fisher is feeling confident after handing Alabama its only regular-season loss last season, 41-38. While the score says Texas A&M won, it came as a surprise, as Alabama won on the stat sheet. Nevertheless, a win is a win.
Now-departed quarterback Zach Calzada led the way with 285 passing yards, three touchdowns and one interception while connecting with wide receiver Ainias Smith six times for 85 yards and two touchdowns.
The scoring pace came as a shock for Texas A&M, as it finished the season 53rd in Offensive Finishing Drives.
Texas A&M has questions at quarterback entering 2022 with Haynes King currently listed as the starter on the depth chart. King threw for 300 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions in 2021 before an injury derailed his season.
King will need to take care of the ball better for A&M, as this was a unit that finished 70th in Havoc Allowed.
While the Aggies come in with a low offensive TARP of 58%, they will not be short on talent with the recruiting class Saban claims they paid for. The No. 1 class in the nation has plenty of time to gel together before the Oct. 8 matchup.
What to Expect From Aggies Defense
If a team is going to beat Bama, then its defense needs to step up. In recent years, Alabama has become a offensive juggernaut, buying into today’s pace of football.
This year will be no different with Heisman winner Bryce Young under center for Year 2.
The Aggies did a modest job getting to him last time out, sacking Young four times and intercepting him once. The second half proved to be a different tale, with Alabama outscoring them in the third and fourth quarters.
New faces will be all over the defensive side for the Aggies this year, as they own a defensive TARP mark of 46%.
New five-star recruits, defensive lineman Gabriel Brownlow-Dindy and cornerback Denver Harris, will need to produce right away with the returners if A&M wants to replicate last year’s rank of third in Defensive Success Rate and 25th in Havoc rate.
Hell Hath no Fury like Saban’s Scorn
Don’t let Saban’s comments fool you; he is very much comfortable with his second-ranked recruiting class heading in this season — even if Fisher isn’t pleased with the way the czar of football gets his recruits.
JIMBO FISHER OFFFF THE TOP ROPE pic.twitter.com/yVN6HobqkQ
— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) May 19, 2022
Once again, Oct. 8 can’t come any sooner.
It’s a Saban Revenge Tour, as Alabama lost to Georgia in the National Championship, 33-18, conceding 20 of the 33 points in the fourth quarter.
It just so happens that the Aggies mark the first revenge game for the Tide.
Will Bama Be Even Better on Offense?
Last season, we saw one of the greatest quarterback performances of all time when Young threw for 4,872 yards, 47 touchdowns and seven interceptions with a 66.9% completion percentage on his way to a Heisman trophy.
Can history repeat itself?
While TARP usually means little to a powerhouse like Alabama, it will be tough to duplicate its offensive success as it finished last year ranked second in Offensive Finishing Drives and 22nd in Offensive Success Rate.
The Tide lost six key offensive players to the NFL in tackle Evan Neal, guard Chris Owens, running back Brian Robinson Jr. and wide receivers Slade Bolden, John Metchie and Jameson Williams.
Saban seems confident in filling the offensive line void.
“There’s a lot of competition at the position, and quite frankly, we’re moving a lot of guys around to try see how we can get the best five guys to play,” he told the Tuscaloosa News. “I’m not disappointed in the progress that any of them have made to this point.”
If the revamped offensive line can give Young time to work with his new skill players, look for Alabama to quickly remind everyone why it’s the best — especially with potential No. 1 NFL Draft pick Will Anderson anchoring the defense on the other side.
Texas A&M vs. Alabama Betting Pick
It’s never easy projecting games out in advance, but there’s no chance I will go against a pissed-off Saban — especially at the current number. I expect this spread to hit anywhere from -17.5 to -21.5 if Texas A&M stumbles early in the season against Miami.
While both are figuring out offensive questions, Alabama has more room to breathe with the best quarterback in college football returning.
Young will look to repeat last year’s magical performance after an offseason that focused on the offensive line. That will give Bama’s elite talent extra time to make a play in open field.
With Anderson and Company wreaking Havoc and limiting A&M’s offensive opportunities, this could get ugly fast — and there’s no chance Saban will take his foot off the gas after today. He probably wasn’t going to anyway, but this added more fuel to the fire.
Grab Alabama now at anything under -17. Then, there’s a potential opportunity to add Texas A&M pregame for a small middle shot or wait for a blowout early for a larger gap.
Hell hath no fury like Saban’s scorn.