No. 10 USC Football Falls At No. 21 Notre Dame, 48-20


SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) With its season in danger of spiraling, Notre Dame harassed the Heisman Trophy winner and knocked its fiercest rival from the rankings of the unbeaten.

Xavier Watts intercepted CALEB WILLIAMS twice and returned a fumble for a touchdown as No. 21 Notre Dame handed No. 10 USC Football its first loss in a 48-20 victory on Saturday night.

Having lost twice in the last three games, the Fighting Irish (6-2) bounced back against their longtime rivals from the West Coast in a big way. Watts had two of Notre Dame’s three first-half picks against Williams and then a 15-yard scoop-and-score with 3:27 left to add an exclamation point.

“Obviously, we were coming off a loss to Louisville,” Watts said. “I was kind of angry from that. This was a big rivalry game. I just wanted to come out and dominate.”

Benjamin Morrison had Notre Dame’s other interception of the half, leading to Audric Estime’s 1-yard plunge that put Notre Dame ahead 24-3. A week after wiping out a 17-point deficit to beat Arizona in overtime, the Trojans (6-1) had no such comeback in them.

Williams had only been intercepted once, but he was sacked four times by the Fighting Irish and finished with 199 yards passing and a TD. His hopes of becoming just the second two-time Heisman winner along with Ohio State’s Archie Griffin took a hit.

“I made mistakes that I usually don’t make,” Williams said. “Nights like that happen. You have to get through it, you got to keep fighting, you have to be a leader.”

Averaging 51.8 points per game, USC ended up with five turnovers and was limited to 92 yards rushing. The Fighting Irish racked up 11 tackles for loss.


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