A 3-3 first half defensive stalemate between Michigan and USC turned ugly when the Trojans scored 16 unanswered points in the third quarter of the 2007 Rose Bowl Game.

Operating much of the second half with an empty backfield and four or five receiver sets, QB John David Booty picked apart the Wolverine secondary with touchdown passes to Chris McFoy and Dwayne Jarrett during the Trojans’ third quarter scoring spree. Mario Danelo added a 26-yard field goal to make it 19-3 at the close of the third quarter.

The Wolverines fought back at the start of the final frame and scored on a Chad Henne 11-yard TD toss to Adrian Arrington. Mike Hart powered in for the 2-point conversion and suddenly, with 14 minutes remaining, Michigan had gained momentum and it looked like they would make a game of it.

Booty and Jarrett would have none of that, hooking up on a 62-yard score with 11:29 showing on the clock. Danelo missed his second PAT of the night, but the scoreboard read 25-11.

Chad Henne marched Michigan right back down the field completing 6 of 8 passes, good for 61 yards, but his final completion of the drive fell two yards short of the marker on fourth down and USC took over on their own 22.

USC’s next drive was the final dagger in the heart of the Maize and Blue. Starting at the Trojan 15-yard line, Booty completed four consecutive passes—26 yards to Steve Smith, 29 yards to Jarrett, 23 yards to Fred Davis, and a seven-yarder to Smith for the score.  Just a minute and five seconds elapsed during the drive. The score stood at 32-11.

The Wolverines came up with a respectability score at the 1:19 mark of the fourth quarter when Henne connected with Steve Breaston on a 41-yard touchdown pass. The 32-18 USC advantage held up as the final score.

The two-touchdown margin was eerily reminiscent of the 2004 Rose Bowl Game won handily over Michigan by Matt Leinart & Co., 28-14.

The vaunted Wolverine run defense held USC to 42 yards on 23 carries (1.8 yard avg) but the Trojans exploited Michigan’s secondary with nearly the same game plan as Ohio State deployed in the final regular season game.

While USC had five sacks in the first half (six overall) and kept intense pressure on Henne throughout the contest, Booty frequently rolled out behind a moving pocket, and suffered only two sacks in the game. The Trojans also shut down Mike Hart (49 yards, 17 carries) forcing Michigan to pass more than planned.  Henne ended up with a line that read 27-42, 309 yards, and 2 TDs, with one interception. He also had one fumble.

Jarrett took home the game MVP trophy on the strength of his 11 receptions, 204 yards, and 2-TD performance. Steve Smith contributed seven grabs good for 108 yards and a score, and Booty ended up 27-42, 390 yards and 4 TDs.

The win gave Southern Cal a 22-9 all-time record in the Rose Bowl and a 6-2 record against Michigan in Pasadena. The Wolverines fell to 8-12 in Rose Bowl contests.