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The NCAA and USC

A brief history of recent situations involving the USC athletic program.

December 19, 2009

Under review

USC is investigating the relationship between Trojans tailback Joe McKnight and a Santa Monica businessman whose sport utility vehicle McKnight has been driving, a possible violation of NCAA rules. A look at recent situations involving USC that came under scrutiny:

* Reggie Bush -- The 2005 Heisman Trophy winner is alleged to have accepted thousands of dollars in cash and his family allegedly failed to pay rent on a home owned by a fledgling marketer while the tailback played for USC in 2004 and 2005.

* Dwayne Jarrett -- The wide receiver was declared ineligible by the NCAA before the 2006 season because of his living arrangement the previous season with former quarterback Matt Leinart. Jarrett was reinstated after agreeing to pay $5,352 to a charity of his choice.

* Joe McKnight -- During a February 2007 news conference in Louisiana, McKnight said his mind was put at ease about attending USC after he listened to a telephone conversation between Bush and Coach Pete Carroll. The comment sparked an investigation by USC compliance officials because former players are regarded by the NCAA as "representatives of athletics interests" and are prohibited from telephoning prospective recruits. Carroll denied such a call took place and McKnight's high school coach said McKnight misspoke during the news conference.

* O.J. Mayo -- During the 2007-08 basketball season, the freshman guard is alleged to have accepted gifts from a middleman representing a sports agency.

* Pete Rodriguez -- Special teams expert allegedly acted as an extra coach in 2008 by attending practices, monitoring games and offering Carroll behind-the-scenes advice. School compliance officials investigated whether the situation surpassed college limits on the size of coaching staffs.

-- Los Angeles Times

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