The Notre Dame Fighting Irish continued to roll Saturday, beating formerly No. 10 USC, 49-14, on Saturday.
The victory was impressive enough that even though there were no major upsets, the Irish still made a leap in the newest AP Top 25, moving up all the way to No. 9 after Week 8. The poll was released on Sunday.
Notre Dame dominated USC as it has many opponents this season – with a heavy dose of running back Josh Adams and Brandon Wimbush in the rushing attack. Adams led the team with 191 yards rushing and scored 3 touchdowns, including an 84-yard scamper in the third quarter. With another stellar performance, Adams is becoming a serious candidate in the Heisman Trophy race.
Wimbush also reached 100 rushing yards and scored twice to match the program’s single-season record for most rushing touchdowns by a quarterback. Furthermore, the junior signal caller threw 2 touchdowns as well.
Behind this blowout victory, Notre Dame moved up four spots in the AP Top 25. In the Coaches Poll, the Irish came in at No. 10.
Notre Dame began the season unranked, but moved into the top 25 ahead of its Week 2 matchup with Georgia. However, the Irish fell at home to the Bulldogs by a point and dropped from the polls.
In all their other games, though, the Irish have dominated, beating Temple, Boston College, Michigan State, Miami (Ohio), North Carolina and USC by an average of almost 29 points. And now with the victory versus the Trojans, the Irish have a victory against a Top 25 team. Notre Dame also beat Michigan State by 20 on the road, but the Spartans were not in the Top 25 at the time.
However, it doesn’t get any easier for the Irish. Next week, Notre Dame will host No. 14 N.C. State. Kickoff is at 3:30 p.m. ET in South Bend, Ind.
2017 college football AP Top 25 after Week 8
- Penn State
- Ohio State
- Notre Dame
- Oklahoma State
- Virginia Tech
- N.C. State
- Washington State
- Michigan State
- West Virginia
- Iowa State