USC linebacker Hayes Pullard wore his Crenshaw High jersey during practice Wednesday. The day before, tight end Randall Telfer wore his jersey from Rancho Cucamonga High.
They and other Trojans seniors were taking part in a USC tradition — honoring where they came from while preparing for their final USC game at the Coliseum.
The seniors will be introduced and greet family members on the field before Saturday’s regular-season finale against Notre Dame.
Pullard, a fifth-year senior and four-year starter, is not sure how he will react. “I won’t know till the emotions actually hit,” he said.
Telfer, also a fifth-year senior, anticipates sentimental feelings. “I think it will be a little emotional,” he said.
The seniors might not be the only Trojans players making their final Coliseum appearances.
Defensive lineman Leonard Williams, running back Javorius Allen and receiver Nelson Agholor are draft-eligible juniors who could forgo their final seasons of eligibility.
Williams is expected to be a first-round draft pick, Allen seriously considered making himself available for the draft after last season, and Agholor could opt to follow Robert Woods and Marqise Lee and leave USC after three seasons.
Williams, who is expected to declare for the draft, said he would consider his options after the Trojans play their bowl game.
He acknowledged thinking that Saturday could “possibly” be his last game at the Coliseum.
Coach Steve Sarkisian has praised Pullard, Telfer and other seniors this week.
He also had complimentary words for Williams, who has played through shoulder injuries this season.
“In this day and age of guys reading their names in every potential mock draft and where they’re supposed to go, and All-American status, you see so many guys maybe not go as hard all the time, maybe take themselves out and whatnot,” Sarkisian said. “Leonard Williams has not done that once.”
A week after facing UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley, the Trojans will be challenged by another multitalented quarterback in Notre Dame’s Everett Golson.
Golson has passed for 29 touchdowns, but he also has had 13 passes intercepted and fumbled multiple times.
“He’s a competitor so a lot of the fumbles he does make are from trying to make a big play,” USC linebacker Su’a Cravens said. “You can’t fault a guy for trying to make a big play, but as a defense we’ve seen him making those mistakes.
“We have to capitalize off the situations we put him in and just be prepared for anything.”
Trojans linemen must be prepared to deflect passes, Sarkisian said, and also to force and recover fumbles.
“The ball has been knocked out of his hands and on the ground,” Sarkisian said. “When we’re there to make the tackle we need to be able to take advantage of it.”
Tight end Bryce Dixon, who sat out Tuesday’s practice because of concussion symptoms, participated in some drills and is “making the proper strides” to play on Saturday, Sarkisian said…. Sarkisian when asked to name his favorite Thanksgiving dish: “Look at me,” he said. “I like it all."…. The Trojans will practice Thursday morning and then break for the rest of the day.