NCAA Game Summary - Notre Dame vs. Miami-Florida|
(Friday, December 31st)
Final Score: Notre Dame 33, Miami-Florida 17
El Paso, TX (Sports Network) - Freshman Tommy Rees passed for 201 yards and
two touchdowns to Michael Floyd on 15-of-29 completions as Notre Dame rolled
to a 33-17 victory over Miami-Florida in the first matchup between these
former powerhouses in 20 years, at the Sun Bowl.
Floyd finished with 109 yards on six receptions for the Irish (8-5), who
earned their second bowl victory in three seasons and finished the year with
four straight victories.
Robert Hughes added 81 yards on 27 carries, Cierre Wood also rushed for 81
yards, including a 34-yard score, and the Notre Dame defense recorded four
interceptions during the victory.
Stephen Morris subbed for the ineffective Jacory Harris and went 22-of-33 for
282 yards and two scores for the Hurricanes (7-6), who have not won a bowl
game since 2006 and dropped three in a row to end their season.
Harris had a dismal first half, going 4-of-7 for 37 yards and was picked off
"I felt real strong about Jacory, coming in," said interim Miami head coach
Jeff Stoutland. "I thought he was going to have a real good game, productive
game. I just think he made a couple of mistakes that, as a player at that
position, it's costly."
Leonard Hankerson posted 71 yards and a TD reception on six grabs, while Tommy
Streeter added a 42-yard touchdown catch in defeat. He was given an unexpected
jolt on the game's final play, when he lost traction beyond the back of the
end zone and collided with a retaining wall when unable to stop.
Notre Dame went 54 yards on the opening drive of the game and took a 7-0 lead
when Rees hit Floyd for a three-yard score.
The Irish turned their second drive into a 14-0 advantage when Rees again
connected with Floyd, this time from 34 yards away, to cap a 74-yard march.
On the first play of Miami's next drive, Harris was picked off by Robert
Blanton at the Irish 43 but the Hurricanes held their rivals on that series.
Harris was intercepted again early in the second quarter by Harrison Smith and
the Irish took a 21-0 lead shortly thereafter as Wood broke loose for a 34-
yard touchdown scamper. The drive was helped along by face mask and offside
penalties by the Hurricanes' defense.
"We got off to a great start, getting the three scores early on," said Notre
Dame head coach Brian Kelly. "We felt like getting off to a great start was
very important to us in the momentum of the game."
Smith once again picked off Harris near the midway point of the second, and ND
took over on its own 26. David Ruffer later connected from 40 yards out and it
was 24-0 with 4:50 left in the half.
Ruffer hit from 50 yards out with 27 ticks left, but the Hurricanes pulled
themselves together long enough to get a 47-yard field goal from Matt Bosher
on the final play of the half.
It was 30-3 in favor of Notre Dame with 7:12 left in the third quarter when
Ruffer was good from 19 yards out after the 'Canes put up a goal line stand.
Morris found Hankerson in the back of the end zone for a six-yard TD with
10:36 to play and Miami got within 30-10, then he hit Streeter for 42 yards
with 4:01 remaining and it was a 30-17 game.
Nick Tausch was good from 34 yards out in the final 90 seconds for a 16-point
Notre Dame advantage, then Streeter had a potential TD on the game's final
play slip beyond his grasp before his unexpected collision.
The last meeting between these fabled programs happened on October 20, 1990
with Notre Dame winning 29-20, in South Bend...It was also the first time
these programs have met in a bowl game...Notre Dame holds a 16-7-1 all-time
edge in the series and has won three of the last four games...This marked the
first meeting with neither school ranked in the Top 25 since 1979...A junior
wideout, Floyd's second scoring grab of the game was his 20th career TD
reception, breaking Jeff Samardzija's former school record...Miami-Florida
racked up 422 yards of total offense to 397 for Notre Dame.
01/01 01:03:22 ET