Saturday, October 22, 2011
End of first: USC 14, Irish 0
By Matt Fortuna
SOUTH BEND, Ind. — That was quick, no?
USC has jumped out to an early 14-0 lead at the end of one, and it looks like it could be a long night for the Irish if they don't figure things out fast.
The Trojans marched 66 yards on 13 plays on their first drive, using 11 rushes to chew up 7:39 of clock time. They then went 62 yards on six plays — four passes — to take a two-score lead.
Matt Barkley is 6-for-6 with 52 yards and two touchdown passes, and a banged-up Marc Tyler has rushed for 54 yards on eight carries so far.
Notre Dame, meanwhile, went three-and-out on its first two drives and will try to avoid a third three-and-out when the second quarter gets underway, as the Irish face third-and-5 when play resumes.
This is obviously not the kind of start the Irish were hoping for after a bye week and plenty of buildup, and they will need to act fast on both sides of the ball to keep this one from getting out of hand early.