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SEPT. 21 Georgia at Atlanta, N (no game)
COLORS: Maroon and white
THE DOPE: The Aggies have a pressing problem in the middle of the line, where Coach Paul Bryant lost starters at both guard positions and at center. If Bryant can solve this, he has strength elsewhere to match the Southwest Conference championship team of 1956. One thing which may give this team incentive to produce—for the first time in two years A&M will be eligible for the Cotton Bowl. For the last two seasons, the Aggies, with fine teams, have not been available for a bowl bid because of NCAA probation incurred in recruiting the players who are seniors this season. In John Crow, Bryant has one of the best all-round backs in the country. He also has three good quarterbacks; a tough, husky fullback in Dick Gay; and an embarrassment of riches at halfback. Depth at tackle and end is better than it was last season, so only the possible weakness in the middle of the line prevents A&M from being a solid choice to win its second conference championship in a row. Says Bryant: "Over all, depth seems to be our big need. There just isn't much down on that second string.... I'm not satisfied with our team speed. There isn't a single man starting or playing a lot who has good speed. Gilbert [probable starting center] is O.K., I guess, but we aren't looking for straight ahead speed at center—we want it laterally."
SEPT. 21 at Maryland
COLORS: Purple and white
THE DOPE: The Horned Frogs will be rebuilt this year by Coach Abe Martin . Of the 15 lettermen who ended their college careers, eight were starters, including three of the team's top six rushers, the best passer and punter, the three leading pass receivers and six of the seven leading scorers. In spite of these losses, the Horned Frogs should mount strong running, built around Fullback Buddy Dike, a 5-foot-11, 195-pound senior who gained 658 yards rushing last year. Martin has strong halfbacks with enough speed to create the threat to the outside upon which the belly series depends. The loss of Chuck Curtis at quarterback leaves the team with no really good passer. The losses in the line were especially heavy. Only at end, with veterans John Nikkei and Chico Mendoza, are the Horned Frogs very strong. The tackle positions are weak, and Martin has not enough seasoned guards. He has three good centers in Jim Ozee, Dale Walker and Arvie Martin. All in all, with good running backs available and adequate quarterbacking, the Horned Frogs will probably move the ball well but, with a lack of experience in the line, the TCU defense may break down too often.
Kansas, N (32-0)