Well that was certainly unexpected.
Sure, A&M was coming off of an impressive shutout win over Wyoming. But come on, it was Wyoming—if I recall correctly, they finished last in their conference last season—so we’re not talking a powerhouse here. But then came Clemson. A ranked opponent (uh-oh). A fast opponent (uh-oh).
A completely overmatched opponent, as it turned out. Final score: A&M – 27, Clemson – 6, the Aggies first win over a ranked opponent in the Franchione era.
The Aggie defense that throttled Wyoming the previous week showed up again, holding a much more potent Tigers offense to only 250 yards and a single touchdown. For the second week in a row, the Aggie offense cracked the 500-yard mark and this time got to show off a suddenly potent rushing attack as well (over 300 yards, including a pair of 100-yard rushers). And for the third game in a row, the Aggies committed no turnovers, forcing four turnovers of their own. (The Aggies are now plus-7 in the turnover department this season, a startling turnaround from last year.)
Coach Fran has said you can never call a game a landmark game except in hindsight, which is true. But this game certainly becomes a leading candidate.
Texas A&M is now 2-1 (0-0 in Big XII play). Next game: Saturday, Oct 2 vs Kansas State in the Aggies’ conference opener.