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Texas A&M Football

Post-Game Review: LSU 23, Texas A&M 17

November 27, 2014

What appeared a free play might have cost Texas A&M a chance to pull off a comeback victory over LSU.

Instead, the Aggies came up frustratingly short in a 23-17 Southeastern Conference football loss on Thursday night at Kyle Field.

The Aggies were at midfield with just over a minute-and-a-half remaining and facing third-and-10. LSU defensive lineman Sione Teuhema appeared to jump into the neutral zone as Mike Matthews snapped the football to A&M quarterback Kyle Allen. Thinking he had a free play, Allen threw deep to Josh Reynolds, but the throw was intercepted by LSU’s Jalen Collins at the 14-yard line.

It seemed a harmless play, but it was realized that no flag had been thrown.

Matt Sachs, TexAgs Despite every one of A&M's failures, Kyle Allen and the Aggies were attempting to drive for a game-winning touchdown before the no-call. {"Module":"photo","Alignment":"right","Size":"large","Caption":"Despite every one of A\u0026M\u0027s failures, Kyle Allen and the Aggies were attempting to drive for a game-winning touchdown before the no-call.","MediaItemID":48973}
That was the most frustrating incident for the Aggies (7-5, 3-5 in the SEC) in a game full of them.

A&M scored on a 41-yard touchdown run by Trey Williams in the first quarter and did not manage another first down until the second half. Also, the Aggies' maligned defense allowed 384 rushing yards — the most accumulated by LSU in an SEC game in 17 years.

Yet, despite that the Aggies had a chance to pull out a victory after Speedy Noil made a circus catch for a touchdown and the A&M defense defense forced LSU (8-4, 4-4) to settle for a field goal and a 23-17 lead with 2:07 remaining. On the ensuing series, Allen completed passes for 12 yards to Boone Neiderhofer and Noil to move the Aggies to their own 49-yard line.

But the drive ended there on one last pass that was thrown and one penalty flag that was not.

Rising: No doubt, the blood pressure of most Aggies was climbing dramatically by halftime. A&M was hit with two controversial penalties that likely had Aggies boiling over.

First, on third-and-4, Myles Garrett swooped in from the left side to force LSU quarterback Anthony Jennings to fumble. The ball rolled forward and was recovered by LSU a yard short of the first down. But there was an inadvertent whistle to end the play. Because of the quick whistle the officials decided to pretend the play never took place and gave LSU a “do-over.” The Tigers picked up the first down on the ensuing play.

Then, late in the second quarter free safety Armani Watts was flagged for targeting as he broke up a pass intended for Malachi Dupre near the goal line. Although replays appeared to show that Watts made contact with his shoulder rather than his helmet, the call was upheld. Watts was ejected and LSU was awarded 10 yards. That led to a field goal which gave LSU a 17-7 halftime lead.

Falling: The Kyle Field west side stands will tumble down in about three weeks. In the next phase of the Kyle Field renovation, the west side, which includes the press box, will be imploded on Dec. 21. That side will be rebuilt over the offseason to complete the $450 million project.

Brandon Jones, TexAgs Even in a losing effort, Noil showed his extreme ability and potential with a touchdown grab that gave A&M its final chance. {"Module":"photo","Alignment":"right","Size":"large","Caption":"Even in a losing effort, Noil showed his extreme ability and potential with a touchdown grab that gave A\u0026M its final chance.","MediaItemID":45821}
Best hands: Noil made perhaps the best catch of his young career in the fourth quarter as he pulled in a 27-yard touchdown throw from Allen. Noil was well covered down the sideline by LSU cornerback Tre’Davious White. However, Noil leaped high and reached over White to make the catch in the end zone.

Best hit: Give credit where credit is due. Midway through the second quarter LSU running back Leonard Fournette literally ran over Texas A&M safety Howard Matthews on a 22-yard touchdown run. Old-timers would compare the run to Georgia’s Herschel Walker running over Tennessee’s Bill Bates in 1980. And my god, he’s (Fournette) just a freshman.

Turning point: Although the Aggies were lethargic most of the game, they mounted a furious rally. The outcome was not in doubt until A&M’s final play when Allen’s deep pass for Reynolds was intercepted.

Standing ‘O’: The much-maligned Texas A&M defense gave up 491 yards of total offense, but managed to hold LSU to a field goal late in the game to stay in contention. LSU, holding a three-point lead and looking for a clinching touchdown, had first down at the A&M 21-yard line. But after two short runs, Devonta Burns sacked Anthony Jennings to force the field goal and keep A&M’s hopes for a rally intact.

Scoring summary

First quarter
A&M: Trey Williams 41 run (Josh Lambo kick). Key play: De’Vante Harris interception. A&M 7, LSU 0

Second quarter
LSU: Leonard Fournette 22 run (Colby Delahoussaye kick). Key play: Travin Dural 19 run to A&M 27. A&M 7, LSU 7

LSU: John Diarse 10 pass from Anthony Jennings (Delahoussaye kick). Key play: Jennings 36 run. LSU 14, A&M 7

LSU: Trent Domingue 31 FG. Key play: Duke Riley recovers Speedy Noil fumble on kickoff. LSU 17, A&M 7

Third quarter
LSU: Domingue 27 FG. Key play: Terrence Magee 26 run. LSU 20, A&M 7

Fourth quarter
A&M: Lambo 34 FG. Key play: Boone Neiderhofer 42 pass from Kyle Allen. LSU 20, A&M 10

A&M: Noil 27 pass from Allen. (Lambo kick). Key play: Ben Compton 6-yard pass from Allen on third-and-four at the LSU 43. LSU 20, A&M 17

LSU: Delahoussaye 43 FG. Key play: Fournette 46 run. LSU 23, A&M 17
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