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LUCK O THE IRISH.....CFB.....Sa 9/19/09
Posted on: 09-19-2009

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>>caption:  GOLDEN TATE (#23)


    QBack Kirk Cousins completed pass
after pass on Michigan State's final
possession. But after a near-miss, his
last completion was to an Irishman, an
interception by ND's Kyle McCarthy at the
Notre Dame four yard line with 57-sec to play.
    That's how Notre Dame held on to edge Michigan State 33-30 Saturday.
    It was the first Notre Dame home win over the Spartans since 1993.
    Just before the INT Cousins threw to a wide open Larry Caper at the back of the
end zone, but the high pass slipped through Caper's fingers. One play later with the
ball at the Irish 18, Cousins found the wrong colored jersey. Under pressure from
Irish LBacker Darius Fleming, Cousins wobbled a floater for McCarthy's third
interception in as many games this year (one in each). In a drive that had started
at the MSU 20, Cousins was 7-for-8 for 62-yards before the near-TD on first down,
then the interception on second down.    
    The back and forth football game saw State take a 17-16 lead just before halftime
and go ahead again 30-26 midway through the 4th-Qtr before Fighting Irish QBack
Jimmy Clausen hit Golden Tate with a 33-yard winning touchdown pass with 5:18
    Armando Allen Jr. had a 13-yard touchdown run and Michael Floyd a 22-yard
touchdown reception (PAT failed) to give the Fighting Irish a 13-3/1st-Qtr advantage.
State's only score in that frame was a 43-yard Brett Swenson field goal.
    The Spartans roared back in the 2nd-Qtr on a trick play 30-yard TD pass from
Keshawn Martin to fellow wide-out Blair White and a 1-yard rush by Caper with 1:01
left in the 1st-H. This time it was ND who had the field goal sandwiched between
opposition touchdowns, a 22-yard Nick Tausch boot. Because Swenson made both his
PATs, MSU had a 17-16 intermission margin.    
    Notre Dame opened the 3rd-Qtr on a TD drive which saw Allen throw a wildcat
pass 5-yards to Robby Parris for the score. Tausch added a 46-yard FG and the Irish
had a 26-17 bulge.
    State bounced back with a pair of touchdowns on Caper's second TD run of the game
(7-yards) with 1:24 left in the 3rd-Qtr and White's second TD catch (17-yards from Cousins)
with 9:33 left in regulation. Swenson's PAT on Caper's TD was blocked, so the MSU lead
was 30-26. The block ended Swenson's consecutive PAT kick streak at 76, which tied the
MSU record set by Dave Rayner.
    Clausen concluded the scoring with his touchdown pass to Tate and Cousins ended
the suspense with his interception.  
    Cousins was 23-of-35 for 302-yards (all new career-highs) and Keith Nichol 2-of-4 for
22-yards in his usual 2nd-Qtr cameo for MSU. Nichol also ran twice for 14-yards and Cousins
twice for 3-yards.
    The Spartans averaged over 5-yards per carry in the 1st-H, but settled for 105-yards
on the ground in 25 runs. Caper had 12 carries for 52-yards and his first two career TDs.
    Back off the injured list for his first appearance of the season, Mark Dell led Spartan
receivers with six grabs for 121-yards. B.J. Cunningham, the go-to guy on the final drive,
had a career-high seven receptions for 74-yards. White caught six passes for 75-yards
and 2-TDs.
    Clausen completed 22-of-31 passes for an even 300-yards and the pair of TDs.
He was sacked for the first two times this season and the first sack in the 2nd-Qtr injured
Clausen's right foot. He hobbled through the rest of the game missing a handful of
    Allen ran 23 times for 115-yards.
    Tate caught seven balls for 127-yards. Floyd had just two grabs for 38-yards before
injuring his shoulder in the 2nd-Qtr on a near-TD. It's believed Floyd has a broken
    Notre Dame improved to 2-1 and Michigan State fell to 1-2.


MSU H-COACH MARK DANTONIO:   "We left plays on the field. We can't do that against a good
football team. We can't do that in an away game."

MSU QB KIRK COUSINS:   "I needed to throw the ball away or take a sack, anything to throw
the ball away [on the late INT]."

MSU WR KESHAWN MARTIN:   "It was a little tougher than Central Michigan [a home loss
the week before] because it was such a big [game] for us."

ND DB KYLE McCARTHY:   "I think this is a huge step for our guys. Not necessarily for
the program, but for the guys in the locker room. We deserve this win."

ND H-COACH CHARLIE WEIS:   "I'm really, really happy for those kids in there. It's nice
to see how genuinely excited they are. They feel great."



    The Michigan Wolverines literally ran over Eastern Michigan 45-17 Saturday afternoon.
    UM rushed for 380-yards. Carlos Brown had a career-high 187-yards on the ground
including a 90-yard touchdown scamper (third longest in UM history) plus another 9-yard
scoring run.
    The Eagles hung in with their Washtenaw County rivals in the opening half, trailing
only 24-17 before Michigan scored the only three touchdowns after intermission.
    UM back-up QBack Denard Robinson was 0-for-4 in the air, but ran three times
for 60-yards and two touchdowns. Starting Q-B Tate Forcier was 7-of-13 for Michigan's
only 68 aerial yards.
    EMU RB ack Dwayne Priest ran 27 times for 91 net yards and a touchdown.
    Two Eastern QBacks combined for 106 passing yards.
    Michigan remained unbeaten at 3-0, equalling last year's victory total. Eastern
Michigan fell to 0-3 on the year, 0-9 all-time vs the Wolverines and 0-26 all-time vs
Big Ten foes.



    Wayne State defeated Findlay 35-21 Saturday afternoon to go to 3-1 on the season
and hand the Oilers their first loss of the year.
    RBack Joique Bell treated the Tartar/Warrior Day crowd with an 11-yard run in the
2nd-Qtr that made him the Great Lakes Conference's all-time leading rusher. Bell had
102 rushing yards in the 2nd-Qtr, 289 in the game and a trio of touchdown runs of 26,
2 and 55-yards.
    Wayne's three QBacks threw the ball only 15 times, completing just five with a trio
of interceptions, two of the INTs by Zack George. There was one WSU air attack bomb,
a 35-yard TD pass from Mickey Mohner to Ed Sanders.  
    UF's Monterae Williams ran 31 times for a net of 92-yards with a 1-yard touchdown.
    WSU and UF are both 3-1 overall and 2-1 in the GLIAC.



    Central Michigan routed Alcorn State 48-0 in Mt. Pleasant. Chippewa RBack Carl Volny
rushed for 101-yards and two touchdowns while QBack Dan LeFevour was 10-of-12 passing
and also ran for a pair of touchdowns. The Chips defense held Alcorn to 36 rushing yards
and an even 100 passing yards. CMU is 2-1 and Alcorn 0-2.
    Western Michigan opened MAC play with a 48-26 home win over Miami-of-Ohio.
The Broncos led 28-0 at the half and 48-12 after three quarters. WMU QBack Tim Hiller
was 17-of-29 for 185-yards and four touchdowns before sitting down early. Juan Nunez
caught six balls for 79-yards and two TDs. Western's Brandon West ran 18 times for 91-
yards and a score. RedHawks QBack Daniel Raudabaugh went 25-for-42 for 288-yards and
two touchdowns, both those scores to Eugene Harris III. Western's first win of the year
came in the Broncos' third game. Miami remained winless at 0-3 and 0-1.


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