Ninth-ranked Irish Handle Cougars
NOTRE DAME -- Brady Quinn threw for a Notre Dame record six touchdowns, including a school record four TD's to receiver Maurice Stovall, leading the ninth-ranked Irish to a 49-23 victory over BYU on Saturday. The Notre Dame victory prevented a school-record fifth straight loss at Notre Dame Stadium.
"I'm really happy for these guys," Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis said. "It really wasn't easy because the game was closer than the final score may indicate."
Quinn completed 32-of-41 attempts for 467 yards, marking his sixth career 300-yard game--also another Notre Dame record. Quinn used six different receivers during the game; however, he completed a combined 24 attempts to Maurice Stovall (14) and Jeff Samardzija (10). Stovall and Samardzija became the first pair of Notre Dame receivers to post 10 or more receptions in a single game.
"They [Notre Dame] deserved to win," BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall said. "They outperformed us in every aspect of the game today. Brady Quinn and Maurice Stovall had outstanding performances of offense.
"Our football team is growing and learning, and we did not perform up to our best today. I am looking forward to getting this team back home and back on track against Air Force next week."
The BYU defense held the Irish to just 44 yards rushing, limiting running back Darius Walker to just 17 yards on the night. Safety Corby Hodgkiss was credited with the Cougars' only sack of the game, stopping Quinn for a four-yard loss. The defense forced four tackles for a combined loss of 20 yards.
Offensively, the Cougars totaled 317 yards passing and added 75 yards rushing. Senior running back Fahu Tahi led the Cougars with 63 yards on the ground, and added 73 yards receiving.
"We had our mistakes that killed us," Tahi said. "We have a great offense, but our mistakes held us back from where we could have been today. I believe if we would have played a perfect game, it would have been a different outcome."
BYU quarterback John Beck completed 26-of-45 attempts for 317 yards and two touchdowns, marking his eighth 300-yard game. Beck is just 41 yards shy of moving into third place on the MWC all-time passing list with 5,646 yards. Beck had two interceptions on the night, including a fourth-quarter interception that was returned 83-yards for a touchdown.
"We knew this was going to be a tough ballgame," Beck said. "We expect to come out and score points, and we knew we had to come in here and play our best. We made a lot of mistakes, offensively. As a quarterback, you have to take your shots and get back up. I got knocked in the mouth a couple times today, but you have to get up and go to the next play and believe in your offensive line."
On the opening drive of the game, the Cougars drove nine plays and covered 42 yards before Jared McLaughlin connected on a career-long 44-yard field goal. McLaughlin gave BYU a 3-0 lead with 9:51 left in the first quarter.
The Irish took the lead on the ensuing series, driving 62 yards in eight plays to go ahead 7-3 with 7:12 left in the opening quarter. During the drive, Quinn completed six-of-seven attempts for 51 yards, including a 10-yard pass under pressure to Maurice Stovall.
Four plays into the Cougars' next drive, Beck's pass to Watkins was intercepted by Mike Richardson at the Notre Dame 48-yard line. Richardson returned the ball four yards before fumbling into the hands of Curtis Brown. With the change of possession, the Cougars picked up the first down and continued to drive. Four plays later, Beck hooked up with Harline for as 12-yard touchdown to complete the 51-yard drive.
Notre Dame regained the lead with 10:33 left in the first half on Quinn's 14-yard pass to Samardzija. The Irish drove 52 yards in seven plays to take the 14-10 lead.
After McLaughlin's 42-yard field goal fell short and to the left, the Irish took over on downs with 7:59 remaining in the second quarter. Notre Dame marched 76 yards in 8 plays, scoring on Quinn's 15-yard pass to Stovall to take a 21-10 lead with 4:18 remaining.
With 1:09 left in the first half, the Irish drove all the way to the Cougars' 11-yard line and were looking to score when the Cougars forced the second Notre Dame turnover of the half. Quinn Gooch laid a helmet on Anthony Fasano, forcing the fumble that was recovered by Justin Robinson at the six-yard line with just one second left before halftime. After one play, the two teams left the field with Notre Dame holding a 21-10 lead at the half.
On the opening drive of the second half, Quinn hooked up once again with Samardzija for a 21-yard touchdown pass to take a 28-10 lead. The drive covered 75 yards in six plays and took just 2:10 off the clock.
On the Cougars' first drive of the second half, Beck capped a 10-play, 75-yard drive with a 10-yard run to trim the Notre Dame lead to 28-17. During the drive, BYU picked up five first downs, including a 24-yard completion to Harline for a first down at the Notre Dame 16-yard line.
After the BYU defense forced Notre Dame to punt, the Cougars cut the lead to 28-23 after Beck connected with Watkins in the endzone on a fourth-down attempt from the six-yard line. The 7-play drive covered 33 yards. The two-point conversion attempt failed.
After BYU had reeled off 13-unanswered points, Notre Dame drove 75 yards in just 51 seconds to take a 35-23 lead. Quinn hooked up with Stovall on a 36-yard touchdown reception. Just over two minutes later, Quinn found Stovall for another Notre Dame touchdown -- a 24-yard pass that gave the Irish a 42-23 lead with 2:16 left in the third quarter.
With just over nine minutes remaining in the game, the Cougars were driving when Tom Zbikowski stepped in front of Beck's pass and returned it 83 yards for the game-clinching touchdown.
With the loss, the Cougars will have to win three of their final four games in order to reach the required six wins for bowl eligibility. BYU returns to Edwards Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 29 to take on Air Force. Game time is scheduled for 1 p.m. (MT).
Box Score (Final)
Brigham Young vs #9 Notre Dame (Oct 22, 2005 at Notre Dame, Ind.)
Score by Quarters 1 2 3 4 Score
----------------- -- -- -- -- -----
Brigham Young....... 10 0 13 0 - 23 Record: (3-4)
Notre Dame.......... 7 14 21 7 - 49 Record: (5-2)
1st 09:51 BYU - MCLAUGHLIN, 44 yd field goal, 9-42 5:09, BYU 3 - UND 0
07:12 UND - STOVALL 10 yd pass from QUINN, 8-62 2:39, BYU 3 - UND 7
02:48 BYU - HARLINE 12 yd pass from BECK, 4-51 1:54, BYU 10 - UND 7
2nd 10:33 UND - SAMARDZIJA 14 yd pass from QUINN, 7-52 2:10, BYU 10 - UND 14
04:18 UND - STOVALL 15 yd pass from QUINN, 8-76 3:41, BYU 10 - UND 21
3rd 12:50 UND - SAMARDZIJA 21 yd pass from QUINN, 6-75 2:10, BYU 10 - UND 28
09:11 BYU - BECK 10 yd run, 10-75 3:39, BYU 17 - UND 28
05:38 BYU - WATKINS, 10 yd pass from BECK, 7-33 2:58, BYU 23 - UND 28
04:47 UND - STOVALL 36 yd pass from QUINN, 2-75 0:51, BYU 23 - UND 35
02:16 UND - STOVALL 24 yd pass from QUINN, 3-55 1:10, BYU 23 - UND 42
4th 09:24 UND - ZBIKOWSKI 83 yd int. return, BYU 23 - UND 49
FIRST DOWNS................... 26 27
RUSHES-YARDS (NET)............ 34-75 23-44
PASSING YDS (NET)............. 317 467
Passes Att-Comp-Int........... 45-26-2 41-32-0
TOTAL OFFENSE PLAYS-YARDS..... 79-392 64-511
Fumble Returns-Yards.......... 1-4 0-0
Punt Returns-Yards............ 4-47 2-15
Kickoff Returns-Yards......... 7-152 5-86
Interception Returns-Yards.... 0-0 2-86
Punts (Number-Avg)............ 6-43.0 5-44.2
Fumbles-Lost.................. 0-0 3-2
Penalties-Yards............... 9-80 11-77
Possession Time............... 33:39 26:21
Third-Down Conversions........ 4 of 15 6 of 11
Fourth-Down Conversions....... 2 of 3 0 of 0
Red-Zone Scores-Chances....... 3-4 3-4
Sacks By: Number-Yards........ 1-4 4-27
RUSHING: Brigham Young-TAHI, Naufahu 14-63; BROWN, Curtis 12-23; TONGA,
Manase 1-1; BECK, John 7-minus 12. Notre Dame-SCHWAPP 8-27; WALKER 7-17;
SAMARDZIJA 1-9; McCONNELL 1-3; STOVALL 1-1; THOMAS, T. 1-minus 3; QUINN, B.
PASSING: Brigham Young-BECK, John 26-45-2-317. Notre Dame-QUINN, B.
RECEIVING: Brigham Young-HARLINE, Jonny 8-100; TAHI, Naufahu 5-73; BROWN,
Curtis 5-52; WATKINS, Todd 4-63; COLLIE, Zac 1-11; MEIKLE, Nathan 1-8;
COATS, Dan 1-7; TONGA, Manase 1-3. Notre Dame-STOVALL 14-207; SAMARDZIJA
10-152; FASANO 5-55; WALKER 1-37; GRIMES 1-8; SHELTON 1-8.
INTERCEPTIONS: Brigham Young-None. Notre Dame-ZBIKOWSKI 1-83; RICHARDSON
FUMBLES: Brigham Young-None. Notre Dame-STOVALL 1-0; RICHARDSON 1-1; FASANO
Stadium: Notre Dame Stadium Attendance: 80795
Kickoff time: 1:38 pm End of Game: 5:24 pm Total elapsed time: 3:46
Officials: Referee: Gerald Wright; Umpire: Kevin Matthews;
Linesman: Tim Podraza; Line judge: Marc Ratner; Back judge: Terry White;
Field judge: Tom Beller; Side judge: Mike Weseloh; Scorer: ND Stat Crew;
Temperature: 51 Wind: W 7 Weather: Overcast, rain
Brigham Young vs #9 Notre Dame (Oct 22, 2005 at Notre Dame, Ind.)
SACKS (UA-A): Brigham Young-HODGKISS, Corby 1-0. Notre Dame-ABIAMIRI 1-1;
LANDRI 1-1; TALLEY 1-0.
TACKLES (UA-A): Brigham Young-BUCHANAN, Kayle 3-5; JENSEN, Cameron 4-2;
GOOCH, Quinn 2-4; LUETTGERODT, Ju 1-5; WALKENHORST, Pa 1-4; NEHRING, Richar
1-4; HODGKISS, Corby 3-1; BILLS, K.C. 2-2; BROWN, Manaia 1-3; ROBINSON,
Justi 3-0; GABRIEL, Dustin 3-0; STAFFIERI, Mark 2-1; KEHL, Bryan 1-2;
MADDUX, Justin 1-1; WHITE, Spencer 1-1; GORDON, Aaron 0-2; TAFUNA, David
0-2; MCLAUGHLIN, Jar 1-0; MIYAHIRA, Cole 1-0; FEULA, Vince 1-0; SITAKE, T.J.
1-0; STACEY, Andrew 0-1; ANDERTON, Judd 0-1; MORRIS, Michael 0-1; ASHWORTH,
Luke 0-1; COLLIE, Zac 0-1. Notre Dame-LAWS 1-8; NDUKWE 4-4; ZBIKOWSKI 4-4;
TALLEY 2-5; LANDRI 1-6; HOYTE 1-6; WOODEN 6-0; FERRINE 5-1; CRUM JR. 4-1;
RICHARDSON 3-2; ABIAMIRI 3-1; KUNTZ 0-2; MAYS 0-2; CARNEY 1-0; SALVADOR 1-0;
HERRING 1-0; CULLEN 1-0; FITZPATRICK 1-0; BROWN 0-1; BEIDATSCH 0-1; CARLSON
0-1; BROCKINGTON 0-1; JANSEN 0-1; FASANO 0-1.