STANFORD, CALIFORNIA – Wayne Lyons intercepted two passes from Tommy Rees late in the fourth quarter, and No. 8 Stanford held off No. 25 Notre Dame 27-20 on Saturday night in the regular-season finale for both teams.
The Cardinal (10-2) overcame two interceptions from Kevin Hogan and a penalty that wiped away another touchdown to win their 16th consecutive home game. Stanford will play for its second straight Pac-12 title and Rose Bowl berth next week when it faces No. 13 Arizona State in the conference championship game.
Arizona State routed rival Arizona 58-21, which means the conference championship will be held in Tempe, Arizona. Stanford handed the Sun Devils their only league loss this season.
The final tuneup for that game turned out to be another tough test.
Tyler Gaffney ran for 189 yards and a touchdown, and Hogan threw for 158 yards and TD pass to Devon Cajuste to help the Cardinal take a 21-6 lead in the third quarter.
Rees nearly rallied the Fighting Irish (8-4) by throwing two touchdown passes later in the quarter. But interceptions on Notre Dame’s final two drives dashed Notre Dame’s come back.
No. 2 Fla. St. 37, Florida 7: In Gainesville, Jameis Winston threw three touchdown passes to Kelvin Benjamin, and Florida State moved a step closer to playing for the national championship.
The Seminoles improved to 12-0 for the first time since 1999 and likely will earn a spot in the Bowl Championship Series title game by beating Duke in the Atlantic Coast Conference championship game next Saturday.
Florida (4-8), meanwhile, ended its worst season since 1979.
No. 3 Ohio St. 42, Michigan 41
In Ann Arbor, Michigan, Tyvis Powell intercepted Devin Gardner’s pass as Michigan (7-5) went for a go-ahead 2-point conversion with 32 seconds left and Ohio State (12-0) held on in one the most thrilling games in the history of the storied Big Ten rivalry.
Devin Gardner threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Devin Funchess to make it 42-41, but instead of kicking for the tie, Wolverines coach Brady Hoke went for the lead with his offense.
No. 5 Missouri 28, No. 19 Texas A&M 21: In Columbia, Missouri, Henry Josey broke loose for the go-ahead score on a 57-yard run with 3:34 to go and Missouri wrapped up the SEC East.
Missouri (11-1) advances to the conference championship game against Auburn — a matchup of schools very lightly regarded before the season.
No. 10 South Carolina 31, No. 6 Clemson 17: In Columbia, South Carolina, Connor Shaw threw for one touchdown and rushed for another as the Gamecocks won their record fifth straight over Clemson.
South Carolina (10-2) won its 18th straight at home, extending a school record set earlier this year. For Shaw, it capped the senior’s home career at a perfect 17-0 as a starter in the sweetest way possible.
The Tigers (10-2) had never lost five consecutive games to their rival in a series that began in 1896.