ND: FOS Quick Hitters

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — From the land of leprechauns, kielbasa sandwiches and $5 pay toilets (more on the latter in a bit), here's a quick-hitting look at Penn State's game against Notre Dame.

MAN OF THE HOUR: Brady Quinn lived up to the hype, throwing for 287 yards and three touchdowns on 25-of-36 passing. On Notre Dame's back-breaking touchdown drive at the end of the first half, he went 5 for 5 passing. Is there a better quarterback in the country?

TURNING POINT: The Nittany Lions will tell you their hearts didn't sink until after Anthony Morelli's fumble early in the second half. But the play that left them zero margin for error occurred with seven seconds remaining in the second quarter, when Quinn threw a 9-yard touchdown pass to Rhema McKnight to give the Irish a 20-0 lead.

SOLID STRATEGY: Charlie Weis had the Lions' defense on its heels from the very first series with his no-huddle offense. After the game, players said they weren't expecting the Irish to go no-huddle so quickly.

NUMBERS GAME: Notre Dame controlled the ball for 18 minutes, 58 seconds in the first half.

SURPRISE, SURPRISE: Notre Dame's fake punt in the third quarter caught the Lions flatfooted. Travis Thomas ran 43 yards to the Penn State 5-yard line.

SPECIAL DELIVERY: Geoff Price uncorked a 62-yard punt in the third quarter.

WHAT'S UP WITH: The field goal unit? Penn State missed a chance to tie the score at 3-3 when Chris Ganter was unable to pull down a high snap on a 26-yard attempt in the first quarter. It wasn't the field conditions this time.

HIT SQUAD: Chinedum Ndukwe slammed into Derrick Williams on a passing attempt after a direct snap. Williams fumbled out of bounds for a 14-yard loss.

HEADS-UP: Here's some advice in case Penn State ever plays in South Bend again - leave early. In fact, consider leaving now. Getting to Notre Dame Stadium means wading through miles of gridlock. On Saturday, traffic crawled so slowly through the residential neighborhoods next to campus that one family living in a house along the most popular route was charging $5 to use its bathroom. And yes, people were paying.

HIDDEN HERO: Senior tight end John Carlson was the unsung hero of Notre Dame's offense, catching six passes for a game-high 98 yards. Props go out to Penn State's Jordan Norwood as well for quietly catching six passes for 91 yards.


o Williams took three direct snaps, but the Irish weren't fooled. The plays netted minus-10 yards.

o The officials were roundly booed before the game when it was announced they were from the Big Ten. It was impossible to tell whether the booing was coming from Notre Dame or Penn State fans.

UNANSWERED QUESTION: Couldn't the Lions have waited another year to resume this long-dormant series?


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