Snap Judgment USC/Notre Dame
Written by Curt Popejoy on 10/17/2009
This game ended up being sort of the bizarro world version of the Red River Shootout. That game was all about defense, and this one was all about the offense. I am really impressed with USC by the way, and think that as a team they seem to be improving each week.
Both quarterbacks had big days, with Barkley's stats just ridiculious with 13 yards per attempt. I think most thought that it would be the USC ground game and defense that would win this one, but it was bombs away for Barkley to Damian Williams. Anthony McCoy and Notre Dame had this game won. Ok, not won, but they were in the position to tie it no doubt. Clausen will take some heat for not getting it done, but that final throw, the wide out slipped but the throw was right on the money. If the wide out makes the cut, he coasts into the end zone.
USC on the other hand really didn't play the defense I expected. They were fortunate that Matt Barkley and company were able to move the ball so well, because Notre Dame was able to move the ball pretty well, better than I thought they would.
Watching Matt Barkley play (and Landry Jones as well) really gives me high hopes that the future of NCAA quarterbacks is still bright. As more and more teams get away from guys who are pure quarterbacks, and more hybrid players it's great to know we get talent like Barkley and Jones for the next year or so.
So in the final analysis USC went into hostile territory and gutted out a win. It wasn't pretty(well it kinda was) but they made it happen. At this point, the path is clear for USC to win the PAC-10 and get back to a BCS bowl. They need to have a few things fall their way to find their way to a BCS title, but stranger things have happened. USC is improving every week.
For Notre Dame, I know they didn't win, but they played really well against one of the elite programs in the country and should be proud of that. They didn't lose on a stupid interception (like OU did), or because their star player melted down (like Ohio State). Their future is bright for this year. I say this year, because Jimmy Clausen has NFL millions in his near future, so keeping him around for next season is going to be tough for Charlie Weiss to do. With Sam Bradford's struggles, Jake Locker's lack of experience, and Tim Tebow and Colt McCoy being less than pro style, That number one overall pick is Clausen's for the taking.
Last Edited: 10/17/2009