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Don't forget true villain in USC mess: Reggie Bush

While there’s still an appeals process to be played out, the storied USC football program was hit upside the head with a sledgehammer this afternoon by the NCAA.

Future bowl games, past wins and current scholarships were all ripped away from the Trojans due to “lack of institutional control” and “unscrupulous agents” and “failure to monitor” and various other phrases tossed out by the NCAA Thursday afternoon.

But there’s one person who is at the very root of this situation who has somehow, some way, found the means to skate relatively unscathed through all of the scorn being heaped on USC — one Reggie Bush.

There’s simply no way to tap-dance around this situation: this is all on you, Reggie.  

He’s the one that allowed his family to accept illegal benefits.  He’s the one who improperly received a vehicle, rent-free home, airline tickets, hotel rooms, cash, limousine service, furniture and appliances.  He’s the one who placed the program in jeopardy of receiving the very sanctions that were slapped today on an institution he supposedly holds dear.

Certainly those who turned a blind eye are culpable and bear a percentage of the blame and deserve lambasting; however, the man that should shoulder the vast majority of the responsibility for this utter and complete mess is Reggie Bush.

He did it.  Not his coaches or his football administration or the athletic department or even the “unscrupulous agents”.  He alone accepted what was being placed in front of him, and it matters not whether he’s the first, last or any number of players in between who have received illegal benefits based on their athletic prowess.  He did it.  And got caught.  And his university is paying dearly while he lives off the fat of the NFL land.

He should be held up to scorn and ridicule and public browbeating for what his actions did to his university.  Will he take responsibility for what he did, for the mountain of evidence the NCAA had against him?  Of course not.

Just a week after distancing himself from the football program with his “whatever happens, happens” blast — which came four months after spewing a sanctimonious “I will defend ‘SC until the day I die” — Bush was back to lovin’ himself some ‘SC as he issued a self-serving statement ahead of the sanctions being announced this afternoon.

“I have a great love for the University of Southern California and I very much regret the turn that this matter has taken, not only for USC, but for the fans and players. I am disappointed by today’s decision and disagree with the NCAA’s findings. If the University decides to appeal, I will continue to cooperate with the NCAA and USC, as I did during the investigation. In the meantime, I will continue to focus on making a positive impact for the University and for the community where I live.”

Yeah, Reggie, try selling that “regret” to the people most affected by your greed and I’m-above-the-rules attitude – the players currently wearing the same colors that you claim to represent and will “to the day I die.”

Shame on you, Reggie Bush.  And shame on anyone else that doesn’t at least heap a healthy handful of scorn upon Bush as they’re picking apart the carcass of the USC football program.

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33 Responses to “Don't forget true villain in USC mess: Reggie Bush”
  1. 78Lion says: Jun 10, 2010 6:47 PM

    Pete Carroll could have set an example for how these kids should act. Instead he permitted anything. He should have a show cause filed against him preventing him from ever coaching college athletes or lower again.

  2. ramfanintx says: Jun 10, 2010 7:05 PM

    um…how much money did USC make off of Reggie Bush…They’re the one to blame. Not an nineteen year old kid getting money thrown in his face.

  3. MichaelnTX says: Jun 10, 2010 7:22 PM

    Pete Carroll has always been ethically challenged. Look how he got the coaching job with the Jets… he backstabbed his ‘friend’ and got him fired so he could be the new head coach.

  4. rbx0028 says: Jun 10, 2010 7:56 PM

    nope, sorry. neither the coach, nor the agents, his parents nor the university forced him to take the gifts. the majority of the blame belongs to Reggie Bush.

  5. SaintsFTW says: Jun 10, 2010 8:17 PM

    Right. You take these teenagers that have nothing and offer them the world and expect them to exercise ethics. That’s gonna happen. No. The people that are put in place to mentor these kids should be the adults and set the standards and examples. [I'm looking at you Carroll]
    Not to mention the money that was made off of Bush during his time there by the University itself. And no, the cost of an education doesn’t even come close to these kids being paid back. That’s a drop in the bucket compared to the money they bring in.

  6. slowfame says: Jun 10, 2010 8:40 PM

    He should be required to reimburse the school for the 10 scholarships they lose per year.

  7. steelerfan9598 says: Jun 10, 2010 8:45 PM

    I don’t agree with banning the current team from bowl play – they end up punishing kids and coaches who weren’t there when it happened.

  8. DCViking says: Jun 10, 2010 9:54 PM

    Spare me all the crap about how these kids are exploited — many of them wouldn’t be at the institution if the didn’t have the athletic skill to begin with.
    If they don’t like what is required of them, they shouldn’t accept the scholarship.
    I do blame the NCAA as well for not sharing the revenues made off of the athletes; but that doesn’t give kids the right to make their own rules and take money as they see fit. And clearly, in Bush’s case, it wasn’t money to survive, it was money to thrive.

  9. mikey949 says: Jun 11, 2010 12:44 AM

    Lets face the facts…USC screwed up…ok…name a team that hasn’t….Alabama, Oklahoma, UCLA,…….the list goes on and on and those are the only teams that got caught. The NCAA is the worst institution that ever existed.
    @plfalzar…ND is a system of the past. They feal that they can be the “ND” of the plast in the institution of DIV 1 football when they play teams such as ARMY, NAVY, AIR FORCE….not taking away from those teams, but you play nobody. You need to be in a conference where you don’t cherry pick the teams you play against. ND used to be the team that said “play me”…..where as now its such as…”are you better than me”. That can be seen the last 5 seasons.
    The bush push won the game…USC can sleep well at night knowing Fat Charlie and Brady NEVER beat USC. Whether Bush cheated or not…doesn’t take away from the talent on the field.
    Bush may have cheated but the USC football team still played every game and no matter what things were given off the field doesn’t demonstrate the talent on the field.

  10. Bucknut says: Jun 11, 2010 8:11 AM

    @mikey949 – Damn straight! There is no doubting the talent on the field all those years. Hell, without question those were the best teams money could buy!

  11. WingT says: Jun 11, 2010 8:58 AM

    I agree that Bush is the key villain in this mess but I also think that USC made the choice to put up with this character flawed player.
    Bush was and still is a punk. He’s a spoiled athlete that has no respect for the rules. He should have never been allowed to play college football in the first place. But USC decided to let him play. He was just an immature kid that needed direction and USC gave him NONE.
    What will be really interesting to see is how Kiffin and his horde of slimy recruiting coaches react to this. It’s hard to believe that Kiffin will be able to stay “clean” during USC’s probation. And it’s hard to believe that Kiffin was not originally involved in this mess in the first place.

  12. HaterOfTheYear says: Jun 11, 2010 10:52 AM

    Man John Taylor you are a clown. Not everyone has the income of some hack writer for a sinking ship site. Shame on him for wanting to provide for his mom and live better. There is a lot of people responsible in this. Shame on you John Taylor.

  13. Arizona Buckeye says: Jun 11, 2010 11:07 AM

    Reggie Bush is a selfish ego invested scumbag. He knew he was cheating, his family knew he was cheating, and he sold out his teammates, fans, and university. We had the same type of ass at Ohio State named Maurice Clarrett. Luckily, he imploded during the off season and wasn’t able to get to a level that jeopardized his teammates the way Reggie did. Man what a piece of shit this guy is. For those trying to defend this pig because he was a poor kid and couldn’t help but take the money – BS!!! There are tons of college athletes with NFL and NBA talent that do play by the rules and don’t slice the throats of others for their own personal gain. If I was one of the players on the championship team – I would be f@#$ing pissed off. To have sacrificed and excelled to that level only to have it ripped away because of this arrogant ass… MAN I’d be looking for some payback.

  14. mike says: Jun 11, 2010 12:03 PM

    Hey Kiffin, how’s that “dream job” now? We in TN will be thinking about you come football season.
    Karma’s a bitch, ain’t it?

  15. Steve851 says: Jun 11, 2010 12:20 PM

    Whenever anything goes wrong, there’s always a Bush to blame

  16. nolasaints says: Jun 11, 2010 1:09 PM

    Bush is one of hundreds of overpaid pro athletes and sure, he showed the poor judgement of a typical teenager. While most NCAA athletes do avoid that path, most schools have VERY entrenched programs to monitor and train students, and avoid such issues. USC decided on their OWN to ignore such good practices, and to look the other way. Who’s dropping you off in the limo today, Reggie? Nudge, nudge, wink, wink…
    To lay this all on Bush is fantasy land! Why are parents often liable in court for many actions and damages caused by their children? Colleges must guide and protect their athletes, which as many of you have noted, they are all to happy to exploit themselves.
    I do admit SOME bias, as I am looking for the Saints to repeat!!!

  17. willmose says: Jun 11, 2010 1:26 PM

    Yeah it’s all the student-athlete’s fault. Just like the bloggers are causing the Big 12 to break up by writing about it. Bush did not rob these people. These people gave Bush things that they knew were against the rules.
    The POSs in this are all the people at USC. Those that turned a blind eye to all this were being paid NOT to turn a blind eye.
    Of course, this ONLY happened at USC. It could never happen at Texas, Florida, or UCLA! Not to mention the priests at Notre Dame (abuse children yes, pay athletes hell no).
    The NCAA is a joke, it does not give two hoots and yiphee about the student-athletes or the universities. Hopefully, the re-arranging of the football conferences with drive the stake through the evil heart of the NCAA. What is wrong with college athletics is a four-letter acronym ending in double ‘A’.

  18. TuckFW says: Jun 11, 2010 1:43 PM

    If you think Bush was the only one, you are kidding yourself. He was just stupid (and greedy) enough to get caught.

  19. Speed_Blue says: Jun 11, 2010 1:47 PM

    I don’t think you can lay the blame solely upon Reggie Bush in this situation. As the highest profile athlete, he certainly gets the brightest spotlight, however, there seems to have been plenty of shady happenings going on at USC during this whole era. This will continue to be a problem for the NCAA and schools throughout the nation until something is done about the boosters and agents hanging around schools preying on impressionable youth with empty pockets. This isn’t saying the student athletes aren’t also responsible, just that less-well off college kids aren’t always going to make the right decisions.

  20. Arizona Buckeye says: Jun 11, 2010 2:10 PM

    I find it hysterical the justification going on in some people’s head. Yes, USC has some blame as well – hence the hammer on the football program. Throw a percentage of blame out there if that makes you feel better, say 25% USC, 75% Reggie Bush!!! Every single large program pounds it in their athlete’s head day in and day out about what is and is not allowed. If USC failed to keep on its athletes as other large institutions – the fine, adjust the percentage of blame. Nobody else matters in this case – stop trying to justify Bush’s selfish actions by other schools and other athletes do it therefore its okay. We’re talking the case against USC and Reggie Bush – not about random statements about its rampant occurrences on every campus, by every star athlete, and happening everyday. Reggie Bush was an arrogant and selfish ass who believed he was entitled to these bribes and above the law. Unfortunately – nothing will happen to Reggie – but the penalty will be served by those that are there now and in the future.

  21. mama tried says: Jun 11, 2010 2:35 PM

    carroll and reggie BUST are to blame!!!
    They’re paying for it now…. Reggie sucks ass and Carroll will fall falt on his face with the hags!

  22. G.I. Trojan says: Jun 11, 2010 2:37 PM

    Interesting how you people want to label Bush as the villain. Really? The NCAA committee is the villain; not Bush, not USC or any other athlete, or sports program. Notice how the sanction EXCLUDED tv coverage – why? That affects the NCAA’s pocketbook. Why is it that every other student on scholarship can work, but athletes cannot. Many of the athletes come from less than prosperous backgrounds, so if someone hands a player an envelope with $2500 and a note saying: get some groceries for your mom and siblings – oh, and thanks for scoring those TDs last Saturday, it shouldn’t be surprising if this athlete takes the money.
    Schools/coaches are pressured to “do whatever it takes” to bring in the top athletes. why? To make money for the NCAA, and the Univ. The NCAA and USC made over $100m in revenue between 2004-2006. I wonder what jersey number was sold the most???
    I hope Congress finds a way to place the spotlight on the NCAA and it potential antitrust issues. The NCAA [itself] should have a “big brother” looking over it.
    Bush the Villain, spare me!

  23. G.I. Trojan says: Jun 11, 2010 3:01 PM

    Who governs the actions of the NCAA committee? Seriously. Think about it — The NCAA gets a cut of the following:
    BCS NC
    Bowl Games
    T.V. Contracts
    Merchandise
    Royalties
    If USC made $100 in revenue and the NCAA received it cut. Can you image the amount of money its [NCAA] collecting from all the schools? I’m surprised the Gov’t hasn’t “looked” into this years ago. If I’m not mistaken, the gov’t does NOT receive any of these funds from the NCAA. — I would love to see what the NCAA’s annual revenue in athletics is – I’m thinking in the BILLIONS. The gov’t needs to apply pressure on the NCAA big wigs. Maybe this will relieve some of the pressure off of the players, coaches, and ADs.

  24. salmen76 says: Jun 11, 2010 3:15 PM

    The NCAA can go to hell…..nothin Bush or Carrol did warrents the punishment…..if somebody rolls thru a stop sign they get a punishment commensturate to the offense. They don’t lose their licsense and got to Jail…..they get a ticket….nothin Reggie accepted made him run any faster or harder……this is why i have NEVER watched college football…..because it is beyond corrupt……now look at all the students and athletes that will suffer…..for what….nothin…thats what……what if USC would have won 1 game that year…..?…would they be getting these sanctions and punishments…..hell no…..it would have never even been investigated….shame on the NCAA….Bush is the man to us in New Orleans…..we are world champs because of our Reggie…..ha ha….just try and take that away you goofy NCAA retards….

  25. salmen76 says: Jun 11, 2010 3:22 PM

    The NCAA can go straight to hell……they are the most corrupt organization in the United States….i wouldn’t give a damn if the United States Congress stepped in and dismantled and outlawed all of college sports…..its just a bunch of school boy stuff anyway….Reggie and the Saints are NFL Champions and the rest of the sports world can’t take it……so go ahead NCAA and trash USC all you want……and yall can shove Reggies Hiesman school boy trophy up their a$$e$ too…..means nothing to us NFL fans…..all college football is to me is a free farm league for the NFL…….The NFL is College footballs pimp…..ha ha ha….

  26. wvugrad00 says: Jun 11, 2010 5:18 PM

    To anyone who wants to blame USC, Reggie, Carrol or anyone else, college football is nothing more than a free minor league system for the NFL. There is all sorts of diry money in NCAA Football, and if you want to be holier than thou about this take a look into the shadier underbelly of NCAA Basketball. At least in college football players have to be there three years, and one and done is not in their vanacular.
    Good for Reggie in all of this, if I were him I would have done the same damn thing. If the school, the NCAA, and everyone else can make money off me, I should be able to make money off me as well. The school made more money off Reggie than it cost them for school tuition, room & board, books

  27. dai chai says: Jun 11, 2010 5:23 PM

    USC is responsible for ensuring that rules it has set for the conduct of its students and faculty be obeyed. However, with the hysteria that follows football and basketball in America, it’s really difficult to see how these sanctions will really ever work, well meaning even though they are. The seductive power of fame and wealth are bound to overwhelm all but an incorruptible very few. It’s difficult to avoid the rational conclusion that amateur sports is an oxymoron and that all spectator sports that draw revenues from gate admission ought to be regarded as professional sports. In a society that values $$$ above all, at least this honest reassessment should be in order.

  28. Stubby_Iberman says: Jun 13, 2010 11:31 AM

    I’m sorry but I was of the impression the Bush was in line for more than 5 million this year. Do you think he would’ve made that if he went to say vanderbuilt? let alone someone outside one of the power conferences? Personally someone tells me “take room and board for three years and you are going to make 8.5 million after that” Id take the deal. The way the nfl is set up you are rewarded retroactively for your college performance.

  29. an honest answer says: Jul 28, 2010 2:04 PM

    I have a number of different thoughts on this. As someone who was involved in athletics and has two sons involved in athletics I can understand the temptation. I had to remind myself of how much knowledge did I have of my parents finances when I was 20 or 21 years old. I also had to think about what I would have done if my parents had agreed to accepts gifts knowing the consequences. All young people are vulnerable to suggestion. At that age you are uncertain of how to respond. I am not acquitting Reggie Bush. He was grown and is responsible for his actions age aside. But I think we should be careful in the condemnation. One last point, most college athletes play by the rules, graduate from college at some point and live productive lives.

  30. football crazy says: Aug 8, 2010 2:15 PM

    Surfer boy Pete seems to have gotten off lite! He’s the one that was supposed to be the adult–and in charge. He was only in charge of taking his cut from the transactions evidently. Boosters, coeds?, …………
    Where else can you go to college and take one class –dancing –and be eligible to play ball?

  31. Golf cart ride with ‘agent’ sidelines USC’s Baxter | CollegeFootballTalk says: Nov 19, 2010 10:46 PM

    [...] at the self-reporting on the part of the Trojans or if Reggie Bush v2.0 on the field takes on any off-field similarities. Permalink 0 Comments Latest Stories in: Pacific-10 Conference, Rumor Mill, Southern Cal Trojans [...]

  32. Ex-Miami AD Paul Dee dead at age 65 | CollegeFootballTalk says: May 13, 2012 3:03 PM

    [...] Dee and his committee hammered USC over the Reggie Bush imbroglio while he was the committee’s chairman, he was also the athletic director at a university [...]

  33. Pete Carroll still has issues with how NCAA handled USC | CollegeFootballTalk says: Feb 27, 2014 11:56 AM

    […] including Carroll, might call it an extended vendetta — that revealed Bush had received upwards of $300,000 in illegal benefits while the running back was a member of Carroll’s football […]

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