NCAA Game Summary - Notre Dame at Michigan State
(Saturday, September 15th)
Final Score: (20) Notre Dame 20, (10) Michigan State 3
East Lansing, MI (Sports Network) - Everett Golson passed for a touchdown and
ran one in as 20th-ranked Notre Dame took a 20-3 win over No. 10 Michigan
Golson went 14-of-32 for 178 yards, while Cierre Wood added 10 carries for 56
yards for the Fighting Irish (3-0), who lost their first two games last season
before beating Michigan State in the third week.
"Very, very difficult opponent in Michigan State; physical on both sides of
the ball," said Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly. "Our challenge was going to
be to find some big chunk plays. We were able to get a couple. We missed a few
that we're going to regret when we watch the film, but I think the most
important thing is that our defense continues to be the group that we had
committed to in building when we started this process, and they're starting to
get to that level that can play against anybody."
Andrew Maxwell was 23-of-45 for 187 yards and Le'Veon Bell carried the ball
19 times for 77 yards for the Spartans (2-1), who were coming off a 41-7
blowout of Central Michigan last Saturday.
"Tough day at the office I guess you could say," said Michigan State head
coach Mark Dantonio. "Without watching the film you don't really have a great
idea about the breakdowns but we didn't run the football, we didn't protect
the quarterback very well and we had some drops. We need to have more
explosive plays on offense. We didn't get in the red zone and missed a field
The second half started with the Irish holding an 11-point lead, and it stayed
that way through the third quarter as both sides had trouble mounting any
After each team punted twice, the Spartans briefly got the ball past midfield,
but a holding call pushed them back over and they had to punt.
Notre Dame made it to midfield after getting the ball back, but stalled there
and again had to punt.
Starting with the ball at its own 4-yard line and under 13 minutes to play,
Notre Dame went on a long drive to kill the clock and pad its lead.
Wood got the team out of the shadow of its own end zone with runs of nine and
26 yards on the first two plays. Facing a 4th-and-1 several plays later, Notre
Dame called a timeout and converted when Wood took the ball around the right
side for eight yards.
The drive stopped at the Michigan State 12, but Kyle Brindza hit a 29-yard
field goal to cap the 6 1/2 minute drive for a 17-3 lead with 6:21 to play.
Notre Dame recovered a Michigan State fumble on the ensuing drive and turned
that into a 47-yard field goal from Brindza to put the game away.
Each team punted on its first possession, but Notre Dame wound up with
excellent field position on its second touch as the team started with the ball
close to midfield.
On the fourth play of the drive at the Michigan State 36, Golson heaved the
ball into the end zone where John Goodman made a leaping one-handed catch for
a 7-0 lead with 10:34 to play in the first.
The Spartans got into scoring position on their next drive and lined up for a
44-yard field goal, but Dan Conroy missed it and his team stayed off the
On their first touch of the second quarter, the Irish made it a two-score
game. Again starting at midfield, George Atkinson busted a 32-yard run on the
first play to get the ball to the Michigan State 19. Four plays later, Golson
ran down the left side and just got into the end zone inside the pylon for a
6-yard score and a 14-0 lead with 10:50 left in the second quarter.
The Spartans put together a scoring drive after the kickoff. The team held the
ball for over seven minutes and ran 14 plays, but only moved the ball 37 yards
and Conroy hit a 50-yard field goal to make it a 14-3 game with under four
minutes to play in the half.
Notre Dame holds a 47-28-1 advantage in the series and has won 16 of the last
21 games at Spartan Stadium ... T.J. Jones led the Notre Dame receivers with
four catches for 59 yards while Keith Mumphery paced Michigan State with six
catches for 71 yards ... The teams combined for 16 punts in the game ... Notre
Dame hosts Michigan next Saturday ... Michigan State hosts Eastern Michigan
09/16 02:08:41 ET
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