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Notre Dame 22, USC 13

No. 1 Notre Dame beats USC, earns title shot

Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson Everett Golson passed for 217 yards as the Fighting Irish (12-0) completed their first perfect regular season since 1988.

Danny Moloshok/Associated Press

Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson Everett Golson passed for 217 yards as the Fighting Irish (12-0) completed their first perfect regular season since 1988.

LOS ANGELES — Theo Riddick rushed for 146 yards and a touchdown, Kyle Brindza kicked five field goals, and No. 1 Notre Dame secured a spot in the BCS championship game with a 22-13 victory over Southern California on Saturday night.

Everett Golson passed for 217 yards as the Fighting Irish (12-0) completed their first perfect regular season since 1988, earning a trip to Miami on Jan. 7 to play for the storied program’s first national title in 24 years.

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Although they did little with flash on an electric night at the Coliseum, the Irish woke up more echoes of past Notre Dame greats with a grinding effort in this dynamic intersectional rivalry with USC (7-5), which has lost three of four.

Notre Dame’s hard-nosed defense appropriately made the decisive stand in the final minutes, keeping USC out of the end zone on four plays from the Irish 1 with 2:33 to play.

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