Dual-threat quarterback Brandon Wimbush rushed for a touchdown and had 206 total yards, and No. 8 Notre Dame held on for a 22-17 win over visiting Vanderbilt on Saturday afternoon.
Wimbush passed for 122 yards while rushing for 84 yards and a score. Tight end Nic Weishar added a touchdown reception for Notre Dame, which improved to 3-0 for the first time since 2015.
Quarterback Kyle Shurmur passed for 326 yards, one touchdown and one interception for Vanderbilt (2-1). The Commodores had a chance to take the lead late but committed a turnover on downs with 1:07 to go. Wide receiver Kalija Lipscomb could not hang on to the ball at the Fighting Irish 10-yard line.
The Commodores trailed for the majority of the game but cut the deficit to 22-17 with 7:22 left in the fourth quarter. Shurmur evaded pressure in the pocket and fired a pass to Jared Pinkney, who bounced off a defender and stretched across the goal line for an 18-yard score.
Vanderbilt trailed 16-10 entering the fourth quarter.
Commodores running back Ke’Shawn Vaughn made it a one-score game on a 3-yard touchdown with 11 seconds left in the third quarter. Vaughn crossed the goal line untouched after his offensive line created a wide gap up the middle.
Notre Dame responded on the next possession with an 11-play, 75-yard scoring drive that culminated with a 2-yard touchdown pass from backup quarterback Ian Book to Weishar. Book, who replaced Wimbush in some short-yardage situations, showed play-action before lobbing a pass to Weishar to make it 22-10.
Notre Dame held a 16-3 lead at halftime.
The Fighting Irish marched into the red zone on their opening possession but settled for a 26-yard field goal by Justin Yoon. The senior kicker added two more field goals — from 33 yards and 46 yards — before the break.
Wimbush scored the only touchdown of the first half on a 12-yard run in the final minute of the first quarter. He dropped into the pocket and surveyed the field before tucking the ball and sprinting right.
It marked his first rushing touchdown of the season and the 16th of his career.
Vanderbilt kicker Ryley Guay connected from 21 yards as time expired in the first half.
—Field Level Media