Bama At A&M Could Come Down To One Of Nick Saban's Greatest Strengths

Nick Saban 15-2 in rematches after lossesSaturday afternoon, No.6 ranked Texas A&M hosts No. 1 ranked Alabama, in what could be the biggest college football game of the regular season. Alabama is the two-time defending BCS champion and possesses the best coach in the game, the great Nick Saban. Texas A&M's star power centers around the most famous and controversial player in present-day college football, defending Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel. Manziel was in the news all summer long, due to an autograph signing scandal, which would later result in a 30-minute suspension, during the first half of this season's first game. While Manziel receives most of the individual accolades, it cannot be forgotten that Bama starting QB AJ McCarron comes in with a 26-2 career record as a starter.

What makes this contest so fascinating is that Texas A&M's 29-24 win at Alabama, last season, served as the only blemish in the Tide's BCS title run. In last November's game, McCarron threw for more passing yards than Manziel (309 to 253), but was hurt by A&M's fast start (jumped out to a 20-0 lead) and the fact that he tossed two interceptions, as compared to Manziel's zero. All told, Alabama lost the all-important turnover battle by a 3-0 margin.   

While the Aggies enter the game with a unique bit of confidence, viewers should know that once a team beats a Nick Saban coached school, history very rarely repeats itself. Saban is a remarkable 15-2, in rematches after a loss, when combining his coaching stints at LSU and Alabama.

In addition to the above considerations, it will be interesting to see how the player's performances, as well as the great atmosphere of College Station, Texas, will be impacted by what is shaping up to be a very warm, 95-degree, late summer day.