Notre Dame downs Oklahoma, stays unbeaten
Notre Dame's Cierre Wood runs for a touchdown against Oklahoma on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2012, in Norman, Okla. (Getty Images)
Photo by Getty Images
NORMAN, Okla. — Everett Golson threw for 177 yards and plunged in for the decisive 1-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter, Manti Te'o bolstered his Heisman Trophy candidacy with a late interception and No. 5 Notre Dame beat No. 8 Oklahoma, 30-13, on Saturday night to remain undefeated.
Te'o, the standout linebacker who has a penchant for causing turnovers, dove when Landry Jones' pass ricocheted off of Jalen Saunders and got his gloved hands under it. Kyle Brindza tacked on his third field goal soon after, and Theo Riddick added a late touchdown run as the Fighting Irish (8-0) put it away with 20 fourth-quarter points.
Jones threw for 356 yards with no touchdowns for the Sooners (5-2), who were still clinging to hope they could get back in the national title race before the loss. Saunders caught 15 passes for 181 yards.
Notre Dame is off to its best start in a decade, doing so as the only team in the country with four wins against top 25 teams — including two on the road against top 10 foes.
Te'o and the second-ranked Irish defense frequently gave up underneath passes but prevented them from turning into big gains, making the Sooners snap the ball over and over while the Irish waited for a mistake that would snuff out the drive.
Oklahoma's first two red-zone possessions ended with field goals, and the Sooners turned to backup quarterback Blake Bell and their “Belldozer” short-yardage run package to finally punch one in and tie the game, 13-13, with 9:10 remaining.
Golson answered on the next play with a 50-yard post pass to freshman Chris Brown — his first career reception.
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