Notre Dame quarterback Jimmy Clausens place among the elite college quarterbacks was solidified with his game-winning drive in Saturday nights 24-21 victory over Purdue at Ross-Ade Stadium.
The 6-foot-3, 223-pound junior, playing with a turf toe injury, engineered a brilliant 12-play, 72-yard scoring drive in 3:16 to give the Irish (3-1) a comeback road win.
Starting at his 28-yard line with 3:41 remaining in the game after playing only one series since the end of the first half, Clausen completed 6 of 9 passes and found tight end Kyle Rudolph for the 2-yard game-winning touchdown with 24.8 seconds remaining.
Purdue did help Clausen with a timeout with 36.9 seconds remaining, giving him two tries at the game-winner. But for a quarterback to be at less than 100 percent physically and playing sparingly, the drive was a thing of beauty.
The team has changed, coach Charlie Weis said. Where maybe my teams in the past in the same situation might have been frazzled, this team didnt get frazzled.
Notre Dame will not become frazzled in future tight games, thanks to Clausen.