Almost 3 years ago today, Yahoo! Sports Exclusive provided findings from a Reggie Bush Investigation. In it, were details that resulted from an eight month probe regarding what appeared to be multiple NCAA violations. According to the investigation, Bush and his family accepted gifts and financial benefits valued at more than $100,000 from marketing agents – actions that are widely know to be violations of NCAA by laws, which could result in sanctions to USC and Bush, even making him ineligible to play. Included in the allegations were that Bush and his family recieved money for airfare, hotel stays, limousines, weekly payments of $1500 or more to the Bush family, $54,000 in rent free living for a year, $28,000 to help the Bush family settle previous debt, approximately $13,000 to help Bush purchase and renovate a car, and other stipends.
Following a 4 year investigation, the NCAA imposed sanctions against USC’s football team, for “lack of institutional control .” Those sanctions included a 2 year post-season ban, loss of scholarships, and forfeiture of any wins in which Reggie Bush participated as an ineligible player.
While Bush has moved forward to his career in the NFL, where he helped the Saints win their first NFC Championship and Super Bowl Championship, the violations continue to follow him like a relentless line-backer. Earlier today, sources claimed that the Heisman Trophy Trust is about to strip Bush of his 2005 Heisman Trophy. He would become the first player in the 75 year history of the award to have it taken away.
Wow. So for what would now be considered pocket change to his $26.3 million contract, Bush threw away one of the most prestigious awards in sports and one that is given to the most outstanding player in college football – note: the Heisman is different from the Walter Camp and Maxwell Awards, which are given to the best college football players.
Was Bush outstanding? Yeah, probably so. Was he thinking? It certainly doesn’t seem like it! The guidelines and by laws about gifts are very clear and widely known. The agents involved claimed that they “didn’t know” and that they had assumed that the Bush family reimbursed them for the trips, as they did not have credit cards to pay their own way. So how did he think he was going to pull off driving around in his new, decked out car with large rims and expensive stereo system? Do most college football players get excited when it’s “pay day” or get to stay at the Venetian hotel, charging expenses to someone else’s card? I mean, he wasn’t even discreet! Ah, but then again, we’re talking about the same guy who was rumoured to have told recent girlfriend, Kim Kardashian, that he would propose to her if he won the Super Bowl. Yeah, girls love that kind of thing! Well, the two are no longer together. I suppose this will make this two trophies that he lost this year.