U.S.C.  44, Notre Dame  24: Dwayne Jarrett may well be the most hated Trojan in South Bend since Anthony Davis, coming up big again with some huge catches as USC staked its claim at a BCS berth with a convincing win over the Irish. Brady Quinn again came up short in a big game, whose bad overthrow of an open receiver on 4th down in the game's opening series set the tone for the rest of the night, and must resign himself to being the first pick in the NFL draft rather than the Heisman winner.
USC needs only a big win over their cross-town rival, UCLA, this weekend to ensure a spot in Glendale, AZ. Two years ago, in the same situation, the Bruins stunned the Trojans by staying in the game until the very end, but has a seven-game losing streak in the series, following an eight-game winning streak that began in 1991. Last year, SC humiliated the Bruins, blowing out to a huge halftime lead and maintaining their foot on the gas pedal in the second half; it was that victory that more than anything inflated expectations going into the Rose Bowl. This year, the expectations aren't quite as high, but the Bruins are still going to be pissed.
Hopefully for USC, it won't spoil the birthday of this week's Songleader of the Week, Lauren. She is a senior poli sci major from Palos Verdes Estates; Peninsula High may beto Song Girls what Miami of Ohio is to coaching, and P.V.E. is the San Pedro de Macoris of cheerleading. Her hobby is playing classical piano, and she plans to attend law school, in the tradition of mid-80's SC legend Marisa d'Amico. My advice: bankruptcy law is a growth area, and the competition is not that pretty.