tampabay.com

Notre Dame pulls out win

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published September 3, 2006


ATLANTA - Notre Dame actually won a defensive struggle, scoring just enough points to avoid a major upset at the start of its most anticipated season in years.

Brady Quinn and hometown favorite Darius Walker each ran for a touchdown Saturday night as the No. 2 Fighting Irish, with their highest preseason ranking since 1994, rallied for a 14-10 victory over Georgia Tech.

Notre Dame fell behind 10-0 and was on the verge of going scoreless in the opening half for the first time in nearly two years. But Quinn ran it in from the 5 on a go-for-broke call by coach Charlie Weis with 11 seconds remaining.

Then, taking advantage of a personal foul against the Yellow Jackets, Walker raced to the corner for a 13-yard touchdown with 6:30 to go in the third. There were a smattering of cheers in the crowd for the former high school star from suburban Atlanta, who finished with 99 yards rushing and caught four passes.

Quinn, who finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy balloting while breaking nearly every Notre Dame passing record last season, completed 23-of-38 for 246 yards and converted a fourth-and-1 sneak near midfield with 1:07 remaining that sealed the victory.

But it was the Notre Dame defense that preserved this one, holding Georgia Tech to 259 yards and removing some of the sting from its last performance. In the Fiesta Bowl, the Fighting Irish gave up a school-record 617 yards in a loss to Ohio State.

No. 18 Clemson 54, Florida Atlantic 6

CLEMSON, S.C. - Will Proctor passed for 166 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Tigers.

This was Proctor's first time as quarterback after years of waiting behind Charlie Whitehurst.

"Obviously, at first there were a few jitters, more anxiety to get the game going," Proctor said.

Proctor's first drive ended when he collided with tailback James Davis and fumbled. A series later, Proctor took the Tigers to the Florida Atlantic 7, but settled for a 25-yard field goal.

He finally found his rhythm, and the Tigers put up their highest point total since a 63-17 win over South Carolina in 2003.

Linebacker Anthony Waters, Clemson's leading tackler last year who considered skipping his senior season for the NFL, was carried off with a sprained left knee in the third.

Jacoby Ford had a school record 92-yard punt return for a touchdown for Clemson in the fourth quarter. The run broke the mark of 90 set by Shad Bryant in 1938 and matched by Bobby Gage 10 years later.

No. 17 Va. Tech 38, Northeastern 0

BLACKSBURG, Va. - Sean Glennon threw three touchdowns and Brandon Ore scored twice for the Hokies.

Glennon, the sophomore who won the job that opened after Marcus Vick was dismissed from the team, was 15-for-18 for 222 yards. But he focused mostly on his one big mistake, an interception thrown on a screen pass to Josh Morgan, who was covered.

"I tried to make a play out of nothing and should have probably thrown it out of bounds," Glennon said.

Ore created some comfort for the Hokies, too, turning a swing pass into a 55-yard scoring play and adding a 6-yard touchdown run. He rushed for 54 yards.

Rutgers 21, N. Carolina 16: Ray Rice rushed for 201 yards and a career-high three touchdowns, and Rutgers withstood a late scare to win in Chapel Hill, N.C. Rice had 128 yards by halftime and became the first Rutgers rusher with three consecutive 100-yard games since Jacki Crooks in 1998.

Rutgers led 21-10 midway through the fourth before the Tar Heels closed within five on Joe Dailey's 2-yard touchdown pass to freshman Hakeem Nicks with 5:09 left. They went for 2, but Dailey's pass was intercepted by Joe Porter.

UNC had one last chance when it forced a punt, got the ball back at its 27 and advanced to the Rutgers 29. But Dailey's third-down pass was intercepted by Manny Collins, and the Scarlet Knights ran out the final 1:52.

Maryland 27, Wm. & Mary 14: Lance Ball ran for 86 yards and two touchdowns and Keon Lattimore had a career-high 86 yards rushing and a score for the Terrapins in College Park, Md. The Terps had little difficulty against the Division I-AA Tribe, scoring touchdowns on two of their first three possessions in building a 24-7 halftime lead. William & Mary of the Atlantic 10, is 0-10 against ACC foes since 1986.

N.C. State 23, App. St. 10: Andre Brown ran for 125 yards and a touchdown to lead the Wolfpack in Raleigh, N.C. Toney Baker added 43 yards and a score for the Wolfpack, which improved to 6-1 in openers under coach Chuck Amato. Marcus Stone also found Darrell Blackman for a 14-yard score.

Richmond 13, Duke 0: Andrew Howard hit two field goals and Eric Ward threw a touchdown in his college debut to lead the Division I-AA Spiders in Durham, N.C., handing the Blue Devils their ninth loss in a row. Duke lost to a I-AA team for the first time in nine games since 1978. Ward led a 75-yard touchdown drive in the second. Richmond won for the second time in 11 meetings.

Wake Forest 20, Syracuse 10: Micah Andrews rushed for 142 yards to lead Wake Forest in Winston-Salem, N.C. DeAngelo Bryant's 19-yard touchdown run with 1:20 left sealed the win. Wake Forest lost quarterback Benjamin Mauk to a broken right arm. He was taken off the field on a stretcher after being injured trying to recover Bryant's fumble in the third quarter. Redshirt freshman Riley Skinner took over at quarterback, and two plays later Wake took a 13-10 lead on Sam Swank's 40-yard field goal.