Texas A&M vs. Mississippi State: Never mind Manziel, Aggies defense earning respect

Brett Davis-US PRESSWIRE

While the Aggies offense has averaged 45.5 points per game, the defense is the "most underrated" in the SEC, according the Mississippi State's Dan Mullen.

The Texas A&M Aggies have certainly made a name for themselves in 2012 as a team that has the ability to score a lot of points with freshman quarterback Johnny Manziel; however, Mississippi State head coach Dan Mullen told the Jackson Clarion Ledger that the Aggies defense has been an impressive group in its own right.

"That's what this league's known for, is having that athleticism on the defensive side of the ball," Mullen said. "They fit right in that mold of being an extremely athletic and extremely fast defense. It's probably the most underrated defense in the league."

The 22 points per game against the Aggies in 2012 ranks them as the No. 34 defense in the nation, although that may be inflated by teams being forced to pass to catch up to the points scored by the high-octane offense of Texas A&M that averages 45.5 points per game. However, most teams haven't had success in that category, as only Louisiana Tech was able to score more than 27 points against the Aggies.

The defense of the No. 15 Bulldogs ranks No. 15 in the nation and has given up an average of 17.4 points, while the Bulldogs offense ranks No. 43.

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