Blue and Gold Illustrated

December 2018

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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28 DECEMBER 2018 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED remaining in the first quarter and the Trojans up 7-0. Then late in the second quarter, with USC driving deep inside Notre Dame territory, the defense came up with another huge turnover. Freshman quarterback JT Dan- iels found freshman wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown over the middle for a 14-yard gain inside the 20, but junior safety Alohi Gilman knocked the ball loose and the Irish came away with it during a scrum. Gilman's clutch play kept the Tro- jans from extending what was a 10-7 advantage before heading into the locker room. Notre Dame allowed 12 plays of at least 10 yards during the first half, but just six such plays during the final half. Three of those six came on the Trojans' touchdown drive in the final three minutes that closed the gap to 24-17. "We started to play more to our consistency," junior cornerback Ju- lian Love explained. "We played closer to the receivers. We tried to get a rhythm going." The Trojans were also able to hold the Notre Dame defensive line in check throughout most of the game before junior defensive end Julian Okwara notched the group's first sack with 7:44 left. Senior defensive tackle Jerry Tillery followed two plays later to force the Trojans to punt. Notre Dame scored on the next possession to close it out. "We were giving them free access to the field," head coach Brian Kelly said of the first half. "[Daniels] was in great rhythm. We had to get him out of that rhythm. We played zone, rolled cover- age and got back in a better down and distance, and got control back where we had lost some of the control. "They had a number of short-yard- age situations where we could con- trol flow." ✦ USC VS. NOTRE DAME QUARTER-BY-QUARTER COMPARISON USC 1st Qtr. 2nd Qtr. 3rd Qtr. 4th Qtr. 1st Half 2nd Half Total Time of Possession 11:26 6:03 8:59 7:28 17:29 16:27 33:56 Third-Down Conversions 2-2 1-4 1-4 3-5 3-6 4-9 7-15 Fourth-Down Conversions 0-0 1-1 0-0 0-0 1-1 0-0 1-1 Average Field Position USC-21 USC-27 USC-19 USC-30 USC-23 USC-22 USC-23 Notre Dame 1st Qtr. 2nd Qtr. 3rd Qtr. 4th Qtr. 1st Half 2nd Half Final Time of Possession 3:34 8:57 6:01 7:32 12:31 13:33 26:04 Third-Down Conversions 0-2 4-5 0-4 2-4 4-7 2-8 6-15 Fourth-Down Conversions 0-0 0-1 1-1 0-0 0-1 1-1 1-2 Average Field Position ND-29 ND-25 ND-27 ND-34 ND-26 ND-30 ND-29 PLAY CHART (NO. OF PLAYS) Yards USC ND Nega ve 3 12 0-5 40 32 6-9 16 6 10-19 12 12 20-29 3 5 30-39 1 1 40-49 0 0 50 or more 0 2 RED ZONE EFFICIENCY (INSIDE 20-YARD LINE) No Poss. TD FG Score USC 3 2 1 0 Notre Dame 1 0 0 1 BIG PLAYS (25 YARDS OR MORE) USC • 3-4 USC21 Pi man 35-yard pass from Daniels to ND44 • 2-7 USC24 Vaughns 28-yard pass from Daniels to ND48 Notre Dame • 1-10 USC40 Boykin 38-yard pass from Book to USC2 • 1-10 ND48 Williams run for 52 yards and a touchdown • 2-9 ND36 Claypool 28-yard pass from Book to USC36 • 3-5 ND49 T. Jones 51-yard pass from Book for a touchdown The Irish defense created a pair of turnovers in the first half, including junior cornerback Tony Pride Jr. forcing and then recovering a fumble to halt a USC drive in Notre Dame territory. PHOTO BY BILL PANZICA

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