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USC Football Hosts Arizona For Homecoming/Reunion Weekend Game At Coliseum

Oct 24, 2021


*USC returns to Pac-12 competition when it welcomes South Division opponent Arizona to the Coliseum on Homecoming/Reunion Weekend. The game will be shown on ESPNU.

*Troy has captured more than 80% of its games against the Wildcats, with just 2 losses since 2001. The Trojans have won their past 8 meetings versus UA; another victory would equal Troy's longest winning streak in the series. Arizona has only beaten USC 4 times in Los Angeles (and not since 2009). Nearly half of the games in the series have been decided by 8 points or less.

*USC, coming off a loss at intersectional rival Notre Dame in a contest that saw Troy pull within a touchdown in the fourth quarter, will be trying to snap a 3-game Coliseum losing skid.

*USC interim head coach Donte Williams once coached at Arizona, while several Wildcat assistants once were on Trojan staffs (including Pete Carroll's son).

*The Trojans have one of the nation's premier players in All-American nominee WR Drake London, the top candidate for the Biletnikoff Award (he appears on some Heisman Trophy listings, too). London's 79 receptions and 1,002 receiving yards, both second best in the nation, are on pace to surpass Biletnikoff winner Marqise Lee's 2012 school records, while his catches are the most ever by an FBS player through 7 games.

*Also impressive on offense for USC has been hard-charging TB Keaontay Ingram, who ran for 138 yards at Notre Dame (his second 100-yard outing of the season). QB Kedon Slovis is a 68% career passer (above the USC record) who is in USC's all-time Top 8 for completions and total offense. ILB Kana'i Mauga and S Chase Williams are Troy's leading tacklers on a defense that has 8 interceptins. OLB Drake Jackson has 11.5 career sacks, including 5 this year. Aussie P Ben Griffiths is averaging 46.0-plus yards per punt for the second consecutive season.

*Arizona — under new head coach Jedd Fisch — has lost all 7 of its games this season, including a home to Washington this past week. That extended the Wildcats' losing skid to 19 in a row (dating to mid-2019). Arizona's offense is averaging just 2 TDs per outing. QB Will Plummer has re-assumed the starting job now that QBs Gunner Cruz and Jordan McCloud are sidelined with injuries. WR Stanley Berryhill III, who is eighth nationally in receptions, is on pace to equal UA's season receptions record. RBs Drake Anderson, Michael Wiley and Jalen John handle the rushing attack. UA's pass defense is ranked 13th in the nation. Top Wildcat tacklers are LBs Anthony Pandy and Treshaun Hayward along with S Jaxen Turner and LB-S Christian Young. P Kyle Ostendorp is sixth nationally in punting, while PK Lucas Havrisik has 33 career field goals.

*Other USC teams--women's soccer, volleyball and swimming and men's water polo and swimming--will be in action on campus throughout the weekend.


*USC and Arizona are not ranked in the current AP sports media and USA Today coaches polls.


*USC holds a 35-8 lead in its series with Arizona (not including Troy's 2005 home victory that was later vacated due to NCAA penalty; original record 36-8). The Trojans have won the past 8 matchups, 10 of the last 11 and 17 of the last 19. Troy has lost just twice to the Wildcats since 2001. USC won the first 9 games in the series and 15 of the first 16, then later the Trojans had a 7-game winning streak over the Wildcats snapped with a loss in 2009. Nearly half (20) of the USC-Arizona meetings have been decided by 8 points or less. USC has scored at least 24 points in the past 11 meetings and the Trojans have tallied single digits only once in the series.

*In Los Angeles games, USC is 19-4 (not including Troy's 2005 home victory that was later vacated due to NCAA penalty; original record 20-4). The Trojans have won the last 5 meetings in the Coliseum.

*In 2019 in the last meeting in the Coliseum, TB Kenan Christon came off the bench to run for a pair of long touchdown in his Trojan debut, QB Kedon Slovis threw a pair of TDs, ILB Kana'i Mauga led a defense that shut down Arizona's potent offense and PK Chase McGrath nailed a pair of field goals as USC overcame a rash of in-game injuries and posted a dominant 41-14 Homecoming victory over the Wildcats. USC was up 34-0 before Arizona scored twice in the final quarter against Troy's backups.

*Last year in Tucson in the most recent meeting, No. 20 USC came back to post a dramatic late victory for the second consecutive week, this time as TB Vavae Malepeai's 8-yard scoring run with 25 seconds to play gave the Trojans a 34-30 victory at Arizona. Coupled with the previous week's win over Arizona State when USC scored a decisive TD with 1:20 to go, it marked the first time in history that the Trojans captured back-to-back contests with game-winning scores in the final 2 minutes. It was USC's eighth straight win over UA.


*USC has a 65-27-4 record in its Homecoming games, dating back to the first such event in 1924 (not including 1 win vacated due to NCAA penalty; original record: 66-27-4).


*USC has a 312-124-19 (.707) all-time record while playing in the month of October (not including 5 wins vacated due to NCAA penalty; revised record: 317-124-19, .710).


*USC has won 69.9% (481-199-29) of its games against current Pac-12 opponents (not including 9 wins later vacated due to NCAA penalty; original record: 490-199-29, 70.3%).


*USC has a 453-144-27 (.748) all-time record in the Coliseum since the stadium opened in 1923 (not including 6 wins vacated due to NCAA penalty; original record: 459-144-27, .750). USC's 630 games played in the Coliseum (including the 6 vacated wins) is the third most that any school has played in its home stadium (behind Georgia Tech's 710 in Bobby Dodd Stadium and Tennessee's 633 in Neyland Stadium).


*USC has 7 players from Arizona (S Isaiah Pola-Mao of Phoenix's Mountain Pointe HS, QB Kedon Slovis of Scottsdale's Desert Mountain HS, OL Andrew Milek of Phoenix's Brophy Prep, OL AJ Mageo of Mesa's Red Mountain HS, WR Zach Wilson and PK Parker Lewis both of Scottsdale's Saguaro HS and WR Jake Smith of Scottsdale's Notre Dame Prep), while the Wildcats have 35 Californians.

*USC CB Ceyair Wright's father, Claudius Wright, was a cornerback at Arizona.

*USC interim head coach Donte Williams was the cornerbacks coach at Arizona in 2016.

*USC defensive line coach Vic So'oto was a linebacker with the Arizona Cardinals (2013).

*USC OL Jalen McKenzie's father, Reggie, was a linebacker with the Arizona Cardinals (1989-90).

*USC WR John Jackson III's father, John Jr., was a wide receiver with the Phoenix Cardinals (1990-92).

*USC ILB Ralen Goforth's brother, Randall, was a defensive back with the Arizona Hotshots of the Alliance of American Football in 2019.

*USC ILB Micah Croom's brother, Larry Jr., was a running back at UNLV and then played for the Arizona Cardinals (2004-05),

*USC S Isaiah Pola-Mao's father, Tracey, played with the Arena League's Arizona Rattlers (1994-96).

*USC assistant football sports performance coach Zaviar Gooden was a linebacker with the Arizona Cardinals (2016-17).

*USC OL Maximus Gibbs will celebrate his 19th birthday on Saturday (Oct. 30).

*Arizona offensive coordinator/offensive line coach Brennan Carroll was a USC graduate assistant and then assistant coach (2002-09), and is the son of former USC head coach Pete Carroll.

*Arizona defensive backs coach DeWayne Walker was a USC assistant coach (2001).

*Arizona defensive line coach Ricky Hunley was a USC graduate assistant(1992-93).

*Arizona baseball associate head coach Dave Lawn held a similar position at USC (2001-07).

*Arizona women's basketbal assistant coach Erin Grant was a USC assistant (2020-21).

*Arizona women's basketball director of operations Jessika Carrington was an administrative assistant at USC (2014-17).

*Arizona senior associate athletic director for student-athlete development John Mosbach previously worked in USC's Student-Athlete Academic Services.

*Arizona football team reporter Kim Becker previously covered USC football for