Miller Moss tosses record 6 TDs as USC beats No. 15 Louisville in Holiday Bowl

League: NCAA Football

Posted on: 28 Dec, 2023 at 05:43 AM

Credit: Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Miller Moss passed for a Holiday Bowl-record six touchdown passes in his first career start to lead Southern California to a 42-28 victory over No. 15 Louisville on Wednesday night in San Diego.

Moss got the start due to 2022 Heisman Trophy winner Caleb Williams opting out of the game and he was up to the task, completing 23 of 33 passes for 372 yards with one interception while setting the school's bowl record for passing touchdowns. The only USC quarterback to throw more touchdown passes in any game is Cody Kessler, who had seven against Colorado in 2014.

Tahj Washington caught seven passes for 99 yards and two touchdowns for the Trojans (8-5), who won for just the second time in their past seven games. Ja'Kobi Lane also had two scoring receptions, Duce Robinson had one and Kyron Hudson caught one while also blocking a punt.

Isaac Guerendo rushed for 161 yards and three touchdowns and also caught five passes for 42 yards for the Cardinals, getting extra work after star runner Jawhar Jordan opted out of the game. The loss was the third straight for Louisville (10-4).

Jack Plummer completed 21 of 25 passes for 141 yards for the Cardinals despite dislocating a finger on his throwing hand early in the second quarter.

Louisville trailed 28-21 after Guerendo's 1-yard run with 9:43 left in the third quarter.

Moss restored the 14-point margin with a 12-yard touchdown pass to Lane with 4:51 left in the period.

The Cardinals moved within 35-28 when Guerendo scored his third touchdown, a 2-yarder with 12:51 remaining in the contest.

But Moss was at it again, connecting with Robinson on a 44-yard touchdown pass to give USC a 42-28 lead with 10 minutes remaining, and the Trojans closed it out.

Moss threw four first-half touchdown passes to help USC take a 28-14 lead.

Louisville struck first on Guerendo's 2-yard run with 8:37 left in the first quarter. The Trojans tied it four-plus minutes later when Moss threw a 17-yard scoring pass to Washington.

Another Moss-to-Washington hookup -- this one from 29 yards out -- gave USC a 14-7 lead with 8:07 remaining in the second quarter.

Hudson blocked the punt of Louisville's Brady Hodges to give the Trojans the ball at the Cardinals' 18 with 7:09 left in the first half. Two plays later, Hudson caught a 9-yard toss from Miller to give USC a 14-point lead.

Backup quarterback Evan Conley scored on a 9-yard run to bring Louisville within 21-14 with 1:56 left in the first half. The Trojans pushed the lead back to 14 on Moss' 31-yard scoring pass to Lane with 19 seconds left.

--Field Level Media