YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

COLLEGE FOOTBALL DAILY REPORT : USC : Papadakis Follows Family Tradition

August 24, 1994|CHRIS BAKER

Taso Papadakis, a redshirt freshman linebacker-fullback, apparently was destined to play at USC.

Papadakis' father, John, lettered in 1970 and '71 as a linebacker and was voted USC's most inspirational player in 1971.

"He coached me on weekends," Papadakis said of his father. "We were always in the living room on weekends, going through the plays and knocking furniture out of the way. He taught me how to read plays."

Still, the younger Papadakis was set to go to Cal because USC hadn't recruited him until Coach John Robinson returned last year.

"John Robinson called me two weeks before the signing date and told me that he wanted me to come here and I couldn't pass the offer up," he said.

One of only two true freshmen who played for USC last season, Papadakis played in the Trojans' first two games before suffering a season-ending wrist injury against Houston. He was granted an extra year of eligibility.

One of USC's strongest players, Papadakis, 6 feet and 240 pounds, can bench press 390 pounds and can squat 500 pounds. An exercise science major, he worked out three times a day this summer while recuperating from wrist and shoulder injuries. He ran with a track coach in the morning, did kick-boxing in the afternoon and lifted weights with a personal trainer at night.

Papadakis' training regimen probably helped prepare him for his role this season. He is the only Trojan who will play both offense and defense.

Normally an inside linebacker, he will play fullback in goal line situations.


Apparently displeased with the way the afternoon practice was going, Robinson threatened to extend practice unless the team displayed more intensity. . . . ABC has already committed to televising four USC games. The Trojans' season opener against Washington on Sept. 3 will be shown, as will the Penn State game Sept. 10, the Stanford game Oct. 15 and the season-ending game against Notre Dame on Nov. 26. Other TV games will be determined later.

Los Angeles Times Articles