USC center Khaled Holmes, who has a degree in classics, was pressed by The Times’ Gary Klein to name the character he most identifies with.
Holmes considered Odysseus and Achilles, then settled on Hercules.
“With everything thrown at him, he found a way to just conquer it somehow,” Holmes told Klein.
A closer look makes Hercules the better choice for a USC player. Achilles and Odysseus were responsible for the fall of Troy.
In the Iliad, Achilles was the demigod who chased Hector, the protector of Troy, around the city three times before killing him. Odysseus, the king of Ithaca, devised a plan for a wooden horse that allowed the Greeks inside the city.
Certainly Holmes could never identify with those who figured so prominently in the toppling of Troy.
Footnote: Tate Donovan, who voiced Hercules in the Disney animated movie, also attended USC.