Stat of the Half - Time of Possession
The Trojans hogged the ball (19:20 – 10:40) but the halftime score doesn’t indicate how much USC was in control of the game for the majority of the half. The Fighting Irish were able to get a big special teams play and a late field goal to make it a one-score game.
Turning point - USC getting stopped on 4th and 1 at the ND 36 at start of 2nd quarter.
The Trojans had scored on two long drives to start the game with a 14-0 lead and had been unstoppable on offense to that point. They were headed for another potential score before they were stopped on a Marc Tyler run up the middle and had to turn the ball over. From that point on in the half the Irish outscored USC 10-3.
What USC needs to do – Find early rhythm
The Trojans couldn’t have gotten off to a better offensive start, as the first two drives were things of beauty with the offense looking varied and unpredictable. There was some success later in the half, but the offense didn’t seem to have the same precise flow as early in the game.
What Notre Dame needs to do – Find a running game
The Irish have been unable to run the football much in the first half (only 17 yards on the ground) and they will need to establish some sort of rushing balance in the second half if they have any plans on keeping Matt Barkley off the field as much as possible.