Oct. 25, 1997
Eagles Drop Fifth-Consecutive Game
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Ron Powlus and Jarius Jackson, sharing time at quarterback, each accounted for a pair of touchdowns as Notre Dame had its best offensive output of the season, 526 total yards, in a 52-20 rout of Boston College.
Powlus was 18-of-31 for 267 yards and two touchdowns, while Jackson, who capped his only two drives with scoring runs, was 4-of-5 for 56 yards through the air and carried four times for 16 yards. The fighting Irish (3-5) did not turn the ball over.
During the week, there was talk that Powlus might be benched in favor of Jackson, but coach Bob Davie said that he would stick with his starter and give Jackson some time behind center.
Boston College (2-6) allowed its highest point total of the season en route to its fifth straight loss. The Eagles allowed more than 40 points for the third time in their last four games.
Behind Powlus, Notre Dame took the lead for good, 6-0, three minutes into the game when Tony Driver scored on a one-yard run. Powlus threw a four-yard scoring pass to Malcolm Johnson 3:42 later and connected with Jabari Holloway on a two-point conversion pass to make it 14-0.
Jackson took over for a nine-play, 83-yard drive, finishing it off with a three-yard scoring run 87 seconds into the second quarter, increasing the lead to 21-0.
Powlus came back in and directed the Irish into the end zone, this time watching Autry Denson score on an eight-yard run that made it 28-0 only 4:51 into the second quarter. Denson gained 81 yards on 18 carries.
Boston College broke the shutout with 1:20 left in the first half when Matt Hasselbeck threw a 27-yard scoring strike to Anthony DiCosmo. Hasselbeck was 23-of-33 for 277 yards and one touchdown with one interception.
John Matich kicked a 27-yard field goal 5:46 into the second half as Boston College closed within 28-10, but Scott Cengia countered with a 20-yarder for the Fighting Irish just over five minutes later.
B.C. got within 31-17 when Mike Hemmert scored on a one-yard run with just over two minutes remaining in the third quarter, but Notre Dame put it away by scoring three touchdowns in the final quarter.
Powlus connected with Bobby Brown on a 10-yard TD pass 76 seconds into the final period. Matich kicked a 37-yarder, but Allen Rossum returned the ensuing kickoff 80 yards for a touchdown.
Rossum tied the NCAA record for return touchdowns in a career with eight. He has returned three kickoffs, three punts and two interceptions for scores.
Jackson came in for his second drive and guided the Irish on another long drive, this one covering 90 yards in nine plays. He capped iut by running in from the 2-yard line to make the final margin with 33 seconds left.