USC quarterback Mark Sanchez passed for 413 yards and four touchdowns, USC dominated on defense and the No. 5 Trojans beat up No. 6 Penn State 38-24 yesterday in the Rose Bowl.
After this performance, the Pac 10 is now 5-0 in bowl games this year. I’d have to say that they had the best postseason of any conference!
From the Associated Press:
Penn State coach Joe Paterno watched from the press box, where he’s been for most of the season because of hip problems. He couldn’t have liked what he saw— at one point in the first half, the TV camera caught him shaking his head as USC (12-1) rolled to a 31-7 lead.
But even before the game, the 82-year-old coach said several times he thought USC was at least as good as any team in the country, perhaps better.
It doesn’t matter.
Out of the BCS championship mix, the Trojans can only wonder what might have been had they not lost at Oregon State 27-21 on Sept. 25.
What was thought to be a weak Pac-10 hurt the Trojans’ chances to reach the national championship game in Miami—where Florida and Oklahoma will play next week. But the Pac-10 finished the postseason 5-0.
“With all due respect, those are two great programs, I don’t think anybody can beat the Trojans,” USC coach Pete Carroll said. “I just think we can beat anyone we played. That’s happened a lot to us late in the season. This is a terrific finishing program. There are so many things we can do. We’re just hard to beat right now.
“I just wish we could keep playing. Unfortunately, we don’t get to. Maybe someday there will be a chance, but not now.”
And not soon, either. There’s no playoff in sight for major college football.
USC scored four touchdowns and a field goal on five consecutive first-half possessions for a 24-point halftime lead against a team that allowed only 12.4 points per game during the regular season.
With the No. 1 defense in the nation, there was no way the Trojans would blow that kind of lead.
The Nittany Lions (11-2) scored 17 points in the fourth quarter to make the final score respectable, yet fell far short of their 40.2-point average.
Paterno, who has won 383 games, including 23 bowls—both records—thought the Trojans were every bit as good as advertised. USC won 10 straight after losing to Oregon State, outscoring the opposition 380-80.