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Afterward, many in the crowd of 93,293 chanted: "One more year, one more year" to Sanchez.
"That was special," he said.
"We'll go through it and really take our time doing it," Carroll said. "This should not be an emotional decision."
Williams caught a career-high 10 passes for 162 yards and a touchdown and Ronald Johnson caught two TD passes.
Penn State's Daryll Clark completed 21-of-36 passes for 273 yards and two touchdowns with two interceptions. Evan Royster, who averaged 6.5 yards per carry in gaining 1,202 yards during the regular season, came out with an injured left knee in the first quarter after picking up 34 yards on six carries.
Carroll's Trojans have won seven straight conference championships and played in seven consecutive BCS bowls -- both records. They're 6-1 in big games -- 5-0 against Big Ten teams such as Penn State -- and 82-9 since Carroll's second year on the job, 2002.
They've also won 11 or more games in seven straight seasons -- another record.
The Trojans have played in a record-tying four straight Rose Bowls, winning three straight since losing to Texas 41-38 with the national title on the line.
Sanchez was the offensive player of the game and Kaluka Maiava was the top defensive player, becoming the third straight USC linebacker to win that award, following Brian Cushing and Rey Maualuga.
It became clear in the first quarter that Penn State's usually dominant defense was vulnerable.
Sanchez threw a 27-yard scoring pass to Williams, capping an 86-yard drive that appeared to be short-circuited early on when Aaron Maybin sacked Sanchez and forced a fumble that Ollie Ogbu recovered at the USC 34. But Maybin, who had 12 sacks during the regular season, was offside.
The Nittany Lions, who were 9 1/2-point underdogs, tied it on a 9-yard run by Clark, capping an 80-yard, nine-play drive.
Maybe the Big Ten would finally hang in there against USC.
Sanchez scored on a 6-yard quarterback draw, completing an 80-yard drive that put USC on top for good.
David Buehler's 30-yard field goal made it 17-7, and Sanchez threw scoring passes of 19 yards to Johnson and 20 yards to C.J. Gable in a 48-second span late in the second period for USC's 24-point halftime lead.
Clark threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Derrick Williams early in the fourth quarter, capping an 80-yard drive and trimming USC's lead to 31-14. The Trojans wasted no time in answering, going 82 yards on three plays, the last one a 45-yard scoring pass from Sanchez to a wide-open Johnson with 12:02 left.
If there was going to be any drama on a typically clear and mild evening in Pasadena, that ended it.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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