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Monday, April 24th 2006

Off Topic Maybe Its Good We Didn't Win…

If USC had won the Rose Bowl they might have had to forfeit it. Star running back Reggie Bush’s family has been living in a house owned by an agent who was trying to recruit Bush, a major no-no under NCAA rules.

Documents reviewed by The Miami Herald show that the $757,000 house at the corner of Apple and Luther streets was purchased by Michael Michaels, a member and employee of a prominent Indian tribe in the San Diego area. Two sources said Michaels was planning to form a marketing and contract agency that would feature Bush as a client.

The connection between Michaels and the Griffins and how the family came to live in the home could constitute a violation of NCAA eligibility rules for Bush and Southern California, which came within 19 seconds of winning a third consecutive national championship in January.

According to NCAA guidelines, the relationship between the family and Michaels could constitute a violation, even if Bush had no knowledge of the relationship.

An NCAA rules guide designed for student-athletes states: “Nor may your relatives or friends accept benefits from an agent, financial advisor, runner or any other person associated with an agency business. (Benefits include but are not limited to transportation, money and gifts, regardless of the value of the benefit or if it is used.)”

That refers to NCAA bylaw 12.3.1, which further states that ”an individual shall be ineligible if he or she (or his or her relatives or friends) accepts such benefits.” Thus, Bush might have been ineligible for the entire season.