HOW DID WE DO THAT.
Auburn came back from a 24-14 deficit with just over five minutes remaining in the game to beat Texas A&M 28-24 thanks to two late scoring drives. Jarrett Stidham’s 11-yard touchdown to Seth Williams with 1:41 to play gave the Tigers the lead that they’d never give up, and the defense put a capper on the win by shutting the Aggies down on their final last-ditch drive.
This is a game that we’re not going to be really sure about because you wouldn’t even be able to tell that Auburn won by looking at the numbers. The Tigers got outgained by roughly 150 yards, and only ran for 19 yards overall, but there were no turnovers. That’s the key. Auburn’s fortune this season has hinged on the presence of (or lack thereof) turnovers.
A&M had two key turnovers, both leading to Auburn touchdowns. The second, a pick by Noah Igbinoghene, seemed to completely turn the momentum and led to Auburn’s two late touchdown drives. The first turnover of the game came late in the first quarter with Auburn trailing 3-0. Daniel Thomas forced a Kellen Mond fumble, and Jamel Dean recovered at the Aggie 20-yard line. One play later, Gus Malzahn pulled out the trick play as Ryan Davis threw a touchdown to Sal Cannella on a double pass. Auburn led 7-3 at the end of the first quarter.
Trayveon Williams burst through the line for 38 yards and a touchdown to open the second quarter to give the lead back to the Aggies, and after trading punts, Auburn went on its first good drive of the afternoon. Jarrett Stidham went 3-4 for 52 yards on the possession, with his last pass going to Seth Williams for an 11-yard touchdown to put the Tigers back on top 14-10. A&M answered right away with a 75-yard drive of its own, capped by a 14-yard Trayveon Williams touchdown catch, and the Aggies led 17-14 at halftime.
The third quarter was a demoralizing one for Auburn, as A&M took the opening kickoff and drove 75 yards for another touchdown from Trayveon Williams. His 1-yard touchdown run gave the Aggies a 24-14 lead, and Auburn would only gain 23 total yards in the quarter. As the fourth quarter began, Auburn had punted on two straight drives, and it would punt twice in the final period before the wheels started turning.
With 7:14 remaining in the game, Noah Igbinoghene stepped in front of a Kellen Mond pass and picked it off. Auburn got the ball at their own 29, and Stidham quickly completed three passes to move inside A&M territory. A 21-yard pass to Darius Slayton got the ball down to the goal line, and Chandler Cox pounded it in from a yard out. Auburn had cut the lead down to just three at 24-21.
After a short drive, A&M had to punt, and Auburn used dual punt returners to fool the Aggie defense. Christian Tutt returned the kick 28 yards and the Tigers were set up at their own 42, needing just a field goal to tie. This drive would take much less time than the last one, as a Ryan Davis took the first offering from Stidham and wove his way 47 yards to the Aggie 11-yard line, where Seth Williams finished the drive with his second touchdown catch of the day. Auburn was up 28-24 with 1:41 to play. The defense then did its part, withstanding one long Hail Mary pass before sacking Mond on the final play of the game to cue the celebration.
WIth the win, Auburn improves to 6-3 overall, and 3-3 in the SEC. A&M drops to 5-4, 3-3 in conference play. The Tigers will take on Georgia next Saturday in Athens, with kickoff time yet to be decided.
- Total Yards: 278
- Passing Yards: 259
- Rushing Yards: 19
- Penalties: 6-39
- Third Down: 3-11
- Total Yards: 421
- Passing Yards: 220
- Rushing Yards: 201
- Penalties: 7-31
- Third Down: 4-14
AUBURN: Jarrett Stidham - 18-29, 239 yards, 2 TD
TEXAS A&M: Kellen Mond - 16-32, 220 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
AUBURN: Boobee Whitlow - 8 carries, 16 yards; Shaun Shivers - 2 carries, 11 yards
TEXAS A&M: Trayveon Williams - 17 carries, 107 yards, 2 TDs; Jashaun Corbin - 10 carries, 50 yards
AUBURN: Seth Williams - 2 catches, 22 yards, 2 TDs; Darius Slayton - 7 catches, 107 yards; Ryan Davis - 5 catches, 75 yards; Sal Cannella - 1 catch, 20 yards, 1 TD
TEXAS A&M: Trayveon Williams - 5 catches, 75 yards, 1 TD; Jace Sternberger - 3 catches, 59 yards
AUBURN: Daniel Thomas - 12 tackles, 1 TFL, 1 QBH, 1 FF; Jeremiah Dinson - 9 tackles, 1 PBU, 1 FF; Jamel Dean - 7 tackles, 1 sack; Derrick Brown - 4 tackles, 1 sack, 2.5 TFLs; Noah Igbinoghene - 3 tackles, 1 INT
TEXAS A&M: Charles Oliver - 5 tackles, 1 TFL; Larry Pryor - 4 tackles, 1 sack