No. 1 USC Shuts Down Colorado State 49-0
Sept. 11, 2004
By JOHN NADEL
AP Sports Writer
LOS ANGELES (AP) - LenDale White got together with some old friends Saturdaynight. He had a much better time than they did.
White gained 123 yards on 14 carries and scored a career-high threetouchdowns to lead No. 1 Southern California to an overpowering 49-0 victoryover Colorado State.
The win was USC's 22nd in 23 games and 11th straight - the second-longestactive winning streak among Division I-A schools behind Boise State's 13.
It was also the Trojans' 16th consecutive triumph at the Coliseum datingback nearly three years - their longest winning streak at home since they won19 straight from 1931-33.
Unlike their opener, when they had to rally for a 24-13 victory overVirginia Tech, the Trojans (2-0) played like an elite team, handing the Ramstheir most lopsided loss since Nebraska beat them 65-9 in 1996.
White, a 6-foot-2, 235-pound sophomore from Littleton Colo., knows severalplayers on the Rams and was recruited by Colorado State. But USC won out, andhe stepped right in to contribute as a freshman, gaining a team-leading 754yards and scoring 13 touchdowns last year.
USC's Matt Leinart completed 20 of 31 passes for 231 yards and twotouchdowns without being intercepted. Leinart, who also rushed for 46 yards onseven carries, came out of the game for good late in the third quarter. He haspassed for two or more TDs in 14 straight games.
Reggie Bush, who made three touchdown receptions against Virginia Tech,rushed for 84 yards on 12 carries and scored once. Steve Smith made eightreceptions for 79 yards and also scored once.
CSU's Justin Holland, who passed for 403 yards in a 27-24 season-openingloss to Colorado, completed 19 of 35 passes for 233 yards, but was interceptedfour times. USC scored following five of the Rams' six turnovers.
David Anderson caught nine passes for 137 yards, and Uldis Jaunarajs led theRams in rushing with 74 yards on 13 carries.
The Rams (0-2) were shut out for the first time in 85 games. They hadn'tbeen blanked since losing to Air Force 24-0 on Sept. 20, 1997.
After losing a fumble deep in CSU territory on their first possession, theTrojans scored the next three times they had the ball on runs of 11, 1 and 3yards by White.
USC moved 92 yards on 12 plays for its first touchdown.
The Rams then drove 65 yards to the Trojans' 15 before Matt Grootegoedpicked off Holland's pass over the middle and returned it 57 yards to the CSU32. Leinart threw a 31-yard pass to Chris McFoy before White scored on the nextplay.
White's third TD capped a 74-yard, seven-play drive.
The Rams got a break late in the second quarter when Greig Carlson fumbled afair catch and Liddon Levine recovered at the USC 8. But Joel Dreessen fumbledon the next play and Jason Leach recovered. The Trojans then moved 96 yards onnine plays, scoring on a 7-yard run by Bush.
Grootegoed intercepted Holland again early in the third quarter, setting upa 64-yard, nine-play drive capped by Leinart's 5-yard pass to Smith. The bigplay was a 17-yard run by White on fourth-and-one to the CSU 17.
The Rams then moved to the USC 34 before Holland's long pass was interceptedby Eric Wright at the USC 2. White gained 42 yards on the next play.
The Trojans eventually had to punt, but Dallas Sartz intercepted anotherHolland pass, putting USC in position for Leinart's 4-yard TD pass to freshmanDwayne Jarrett, who turned 18 Saturday.
Freshman Jeff Schweiger sacked Holland, forced a fumble, and Manuel Wrightpicked it up and ran 20 yards for a touchdown early in the fourth quarter tocomplete the scoring.
The game was played before a crowd of 85,521. The fans stood and cheered asUSC's national championship banner from last year was unveiled before theopening kickoff.
TOMORROW | 5:00pm PTLive
TOMORROW | 7:00pm PTLive