Irish fall victim to hype of USC night game

Notre Dame fans were charged with providing an electric atmosphere for the first night game at the Stadium in 21 years.

They did just that.

But the atmosphere still wasn't enough to help the players on the field. With BCS dreams still alive, Notre Dame played its worst game of the season in a 31-17 loss to USC Saturday night.

After four straight wins, it was a game where a win could get the Irish back in the national conversation. Instead--it looked like the same old Irish.

Kelly says his guys didn't play with poise.

"Championship football teams play with competitive greatness, which means that when the stakes are high and the stage is great, they raise their game," Kelly explained. "In that same situation, some of our players didn't raise their level of play. That to me is poise, and we are still building that. That's a hard thing to dig at. But we are still building that."

Notre Dame looks to start the re-build Saturday at 3:30 when they host Navy.

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