Hav­ili is ready for any­thing

Af­ter a big game last week, full­back wants to make up for a 2009 fum­ble against Washington.

Los Angeles Times - - Sports - Gary Klein gary.klein@latimes.com twit­ter.com/la­timesklein

Stan­ley Hav­ili is stay­ing hum­ble.

USC’s se­nior full­back is com­ing off one of his best games, but he has not for­got­ten last sea­son’s de­ba­cle at Washington, where his third-quar­ter fum­ble cost the Tro­jans mo­men­tum and helped send them on their way to de­feat.

“Ob­vi­ously, my turnover was a big prob­lem,” Hav­ili said Tues­day as the Tro­jans be­gan prepa­ra­tions for Satur­day’s Pa­cific 10 Con­fer­ence game against the Huskies at the Coli­seum.

Hav­ili’s fum­ble wasn’t the Tro­jans’ only mis­cue in Seat­tle — they also lost a firstquar­ter fum­ble and had a pass in­ter­cepted — but he is de­ter­mined to avoid re­peat­ing his mis­take.

Last week at Washington State, Coach Lane Kif­fin gave Hav­ili a large role for the first time this sea­son. He re­sponded with two touch­downs and 187 to­tal yards.

Hav­ili would not pre­dict a sim­i­lar work­load. “I’m ready for any­thing,” he said. Washington Coach Steve

Sark­isian an­tic­i­pates see­ing a lot of Hav­ili, whom he re­cruited for USC out of Salt Lake City Cot­ton­wood High.

Hav­ili said he had a close re­la­tion­ship with Sark­isian, and that he con­tem­plated leav­ing USC to serve a Mor­mon mis­sion when the then as­sis­tant was be­ing pur­sued by the Oak­land Raiders af­ter the 2006 sea­son. Hav­ili said he was “bummed” when Sark­isian an­nounced he was leav­ing USC for Washington as the Tro­jans pre­pared for the 2009 Rose Bowl.

He felt even worse when Sark­isian ral­lied the Huskies for a 16-13 up­set of USC in the Pac-10 opener.

“That was the start of the, quote, dom­i­nance of SC not be­ing what we were used to see­ing,” Kif­fin said.

Kif­fin hopes to reestab­lish the up­per hand when the Tro­jans go up against a Huskies staff that also in­cludes for­mer Tro­jans de­fen­sive

co­or­di­na­tor Nick Holt.

Sark­isian and Holt’s fa­mil­iar­ity with USC’s play­ers gave them an ad­van­tage last sea­son, Kif­fin said. And he an­tic­i­pates a sim­i­lar sit­u­a­tion the next few years.

“When you come from a place, you know that you’ve been with [play­ers], you know their men­tal­ity and you know the things they get beat on and the things they do well,” he said.

Back and forth

Kif­fin and Sark­isian jok­ingly sparred through­out the day dur­ing a se­ries of sep­a­rate me­dia in­ter­views.

“I’ve sent him a cou­ple [texts] over the last 24 hours,” Kif­fin said dur­ing a tele­con­fer­ence in the morn­ing. “He’s not re­sponded, so I don’t know what tricks he’s up to.”

Af­ter prac­tice, Kif­fin said, “He texted me back. He told me [quar­ter­back Jake]

Locker got hurt and is out of the game.”

Kif­fin also ad­dressed Sark­isian re­peat­edly say­ing that the Tro­jans were the most tal­ented and deep­est team in the Pac-10.

“That’s an old Lou Holtz trick that he learned watch­ing TV a long time ago,” Kif­fin said, adding “We can barely find enough guys to prac­tice…. Our ser­vice team is made of some kids from sci­ence class. Half of them never played foot­ball be­fore.”

When a re­porter re­minded Kif­fin that down­play­ing his own team was also a Lou Holtz trick, Kif­fin quipped, “We watched the same show.”

Quick hits

Kif­fin said de­fen­sive end Wes Hor­ton was limited af­ter be­ing kicked in the back against Washington State. … De­fen­sive line­man Ar­mond

Arm­stead, held out at Washington State be­cause of shoul­der sore­ness, par­tic­i­pated in the full prac­tice.

Wally Skalij

VER­SA­TILE: Stan­ley Hav­ili, shown against Vir­ginia, had two touch­downs against Washington State.

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