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Saturday, October 9, 2010
Aggies capitalize on defensive play

By David Ubben

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Texas A&M's defense made quite a few big plays last week against Oklahoma State, despite giving up 35 points, including a sack/fumble deep in the Cowboys' territory that set up an early score.

Saturday, another big play from the defense helped A&M tie the game 7-7 midway through the first quarter, but after a 71-yard bomb from Ryan Mallett to Cobi Hamilton, Texas A&M trails 14-7.

Terrence Frederick stepped in front of Mallett's pass on the previous drive and appeared to score on the play, but officials ruled him out at the 2-yard line. A gutsy fourth-down call from Mike Sherman helped Christine Michael tie the game with a 1-yard touchdown run.

Missing that play would have been disastrous for the Aggies. Against a high-powered offense like Arkansas, any defensive stop -- much less a big play like Frederick's -- has to be taken advantage of. This time, Texas A&M got it done, after letting Arkansas march 80 yards in eight plays on the opening drive.

But too many more big plays like Mallett's pass to Hamilton will put a whole lot of pressure on Texas A&M's offense and certainly lower any chances of an upset.