No storybook ending for USC

Published Nov. 28, 2010 12:18 p.m. EST

Dan Greenspan
November 28, 2010

It would have been one of the great Trojan chapters in the storied history of USC and Notre Dame.

A back-up quarterback leading a team of back-ups and walk-ons playing only for pride to a come from behind victory over the Irish, senior connecting with senior for the game-winning touchdown.

Ronald Johnson would have been immortalized in lore as the wide receiver that strolled into the end zone on a rainy Saturday night at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for the touchdown to extend an unprecedented winning streak.


Instead, Johnson dropped a would-be 53-yard scoring pass from Mitch Mustain, Mustain was intercepted four plays later and Notre Dame overcame four turnovers to upend USC, 20-16, before a waterlogged crowd of 85,417, most of whom had long since left before the Irish broke the eight game-losing streak in the intersectional rivalry.

Needing to drive 69 yards with 2:16 left to play, Johnson broke behind a Notre Dame defensive back but Mustain