Arizona tailback Nic Grigsby is watching video of past fumbling problems by former NFL standout Tiki Barber to cure his ball-handling woes.
Grigsby, benched after fumbling his first carry against California last week, is learning from the ex-New York Giant how to handle the ball better.
Barber went from being fumble-prone to one of the most sure-handed players in the NFL.
Grigsby’s brother, Marcel, a tailback at Temple, sent the video clips by e-mail over the weekend.
“It showed how (Barber) was real bad about ball security in the beginning of his career,” Grigsby said. “He went to some trainer . . . and became one of the best.”
Grigsby has lost three fumbles this season. Barber lost six fumbles in both the 2002 and 2003 seasons.
Barber, who finished his career with more than 10,000 rushing yards and 2,217 carries, had a problem running with his elbow out.
Barber compensated by bringing his elbow closer to his chest. He had the ball in that position while doing drills and running on the treadmill to break his bad habit. Grigsby has had some of the same issues while carrying the ball.
“When I am in the open field I try to make more things happen,” Grigsby said. “I get aggressive and I lose awareness of people behind me and people on the side of me. I am looking at the guy in front of me and the ball gets out.”
Grigsby, a slashing runner, sometimes tries too hard to make big plays instead of taking what is available.
Aggressiveness cost him fumbles against New Mexico, UCLA and California.
The Wildcat sophomore, averaging 89 yards per game, is expected to start against No. 6 USC on Saturday. Keola Antolin will be ready to step in if needed. Antolin had 149 yards and three scores against Cal.
“It is really frustrating,” Grigsby said. “You don’t mean to (fumble). I am trying to make something happen.”
Barber never had big fumbling issues again. Grigsby hopes for the same results.