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Texas A&M is finally playing like a team that could push for a College Football Playoff spot. Since a 52-24 loss against Alabama back in Week 2, the Aggies have been a completely different team. They are currently riding a four-game win streak and seem too be getting better every week.
The most recent victory came in the form of a 48-3 domination of South Carolina on Saturday. That means that A&M has beating Florida, Mississippi State, Arkansas and now the Gamecocks. That puts the team’s record at 5-1 on the season.
People will point to those last three opponents as a reason to question the legitimacy of this Aggies squad. But there are a few arguments that could be made to support the idea that they’re a really good football team.
First off, the Florida team A&M beat back in Week 3 might be the second-best team in the SEC. The Gators are currently heavy favorites to win the SEC East and take on Alabama in the SEC Championship Game. Secondly, it isn’t just that they’ve won against those three other teams. They have looked good doing it.
That especially holds true over the last two weeks. Sure, Arkansas managed to make the game more respectable late, but the Aggies were clearly the better team. Against South Carolina on Saturday night, it was complete domination.
The offense was 12-of-16 (75 percent) on third downs. They racked up 530 total yards of offense while putting up 48 points. Quarterback Kellen Mond continued to play fantastic (five total touchdowns). It was pure dominance.
And the defense was even better.
South Carolina only had 150 yards of total offense. Gamecocks running back Kevin Harris (13 carries, 39 yards) wasn’t effective. And neither was either of the quarterbacks, Collin Hill and Ryan Hilinski (100 combined yards passing). There was just nothing there against a stout A&M defense.
But where does Jimbo Fisher and the rest of the Aggies go from here? Can they still make the College Football Playoff?
Well, they might have somewhat of an argument if they continue to play like we’ve seen over the last few weeks, but it is still going to be tough. First off, Alabama would need to lose twice in order to give A&M a shot at the SEC title game. It is possible that the Aggies could still make it to the Playoff without a conference championship appearance, but it becomes much harder.
They would need a lot to happen. The SEC champion goes, the ACC champion goes and, more than likely, the Big Ten champion does too. That leaves one spot. The runner up in the SEC could get that spot — especially if it was a one-loss Alabama. But if Clemson and Notre Dame split, that could also mean two ACC teams could get in.
This doesn’t even include the Pac-12 or a Group of Five school such as BYU. There is a huge uphill battle, but it’s possible.
For now, Fisher should be thrilled with the way his team is playing right now. They are controlling what they can and trying to let the rest play out how it will. But we ultimately won’t know what that means for a few more weeks — at the earliest.
Follow Clint Lamb on Twitter @ClintRLamb.