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Ray Graham (Pitt running back): Notre Dame is a great place to play. I know they have Touchdown Jesus, but we believed we could play with anybody.
Mayock: That was a statement game for Ray. He had an ACL tear the year before, but I'd seen on tape that he was starting to look like the kid from two years ago. He was quick, he was tough—he ran for 172 yards and kept the ball out of Notre Dame's hands. When he scored on a 16-yard run to make it 10--6 Pitt, Notre Dame fans started to get worried. (1, next page)
Graham: From the beginning, our runs were working. My blocker on the edge made that touchdown happen, opening up a hole.
Theismann: After that, Coach [Brian] Kelly pulled Golson [for Tommy Rees] because he was missing reads and passes. I didn't think it was as strange as some people did. If that was the first time he'd done it all year, I would have scratched my head.
TJ Jones (Notre Dame receiver): You got the feeling maybe coach was going to give Golson a break, let the jitters go away.
Graham: I actually thought Golson was hurt. But they gave him another chance and put him back in [with 5:52 left in the third quarter]. I wish he'd stayed out.
Jones: It never crossed our minds that we would lose. Even when we were down 20--6 in the fourth quarter, we knew that 15 minutes was a lot of ball left to play—a couple of stops and a couple of scores, and we would be right back in it.
Theismann: I kept saying to myself, It's two scores, that's all. Was I concerned? Absolutely. But I didn't think it was over by any stretch.
Mayock: The big play of the game was early in the fourth quarter: Notre Dame had fourth-and-four near the red zone, and there was a pass-interference call on Pitt. There's no way that was pass interference! The next play, TJ Jones scores for the Irish. (2) All of a sudden it's 20--12 and the crowd woke up.
Jones: That was a back-side screen with Golson rolling out, and he hits me on a tunnel screen. Their defense flowed the way we thought it would, and when the line pulled, it was three-on-three, leaving me a wide-open gap into the end zone.