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Hammer time: NCAA strips USC of 30 scholarships

Citing a lack of institutional control, the NCAA has confirmed during a press conference that’s still ongoing that USC will be hit with a two-year ban on bowl appearances and will be on probation for a period of four years.

Additionally, and perhaps most damaging to the football program, the school will lose a total of 30 scholarships over the next three years.  Combine the lost scholarships with the possibility that players will have the opportunity to transfer from the program without being forced to sit out a year, and Lane Kiffin will have a very rough road to navigate over the next two or three seasons — if not longer.

As if that weren’t enough, USC will be forced to vacate their win in the BcS title game following the 2004 regular season and all of their wins from the 2005 season.

The Committee on Infractions also, according to a tweet from’s Stewart Mandel, “seriously considered the imposition of a television ban as a penalty in this case … was a very close call.”

These are, by far, the stiffest penalties handed down by the NCAA to a football program since Alabama back in 2002.

Do you think Mike Garrett knows where the unemployment line is, or will he have to MapQuest it first?

UPDATE 3:53 p.m. ET: The Committee on Infractions stated just a short time ago that USC “signees would have to request release from letters-of-intent. COI is not voiding any LOIs.”

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38 Responses to “Hammer time: NCAA strips USC of 30 scholarships”
  1. WingT says: Jun 10, 2010 3:28 PM

    WOW !

  2. Dude17 says: Jun 10, 2010 3:37 PM

    Bush can’t keep his Heisman if all the wins are vacated, can he? The games are viewed as “not played,” which would wipe out the season’s stats. Right?

  3. Arizona Buckeye says: Jun 10, 2010 3:43 PM

    That was perhaps the largest and hardest slap on the wrist I’ve seen… welcome to USC Lane! I’m guessing the people in Tennessee are having a huge chuckle over this one as well

  4. wavoka says: Jun 10, 2010 3:45 PM

    To all the USC homers crying about how harsh the penalties are….STFU! Take a look at what the NCAA did to SMU, that’s harsh. Hell even the punishment Oklahoma and Oklahoma State got handed was much worse than this and their infractions weren’t as bad AND the cooperated with the NCAA. USC is lucky they are forced to only play Chutes & Ladders for the next 4 years after their stonewalling.
    Of course the silver lining in all of this is that Kiffin will be stuck holding the bag for the impact on the football team and it couldn’t be happening to a more deserving guy.

  5. edgy1957 says: Jun 10, 2010 3:46 PM

    Not a surprise and it had to be done. The REAL impact is how many guys jump ship now because if Kiffin can keep it together then USC will have no problem weathering the storm but a significant loss of guys will make it really hard to do anything for the next two years. Year 3 won’t be so bad because while they’ll be 10 down, they will still be able to go to a bowl.

  6. hrmlss says: Jun 10, 2010 3:47 PM

    Maybe Pete will send them some Top Pot Maple bars to lessen the pain……

  7. TJ says: Jun 10, 2010 3:53 PM

    Ouch. The scholarships hurt but I’d think players being allowed to transfer and not waiting a year is more damaging

  8. kupski says: Jun 10, 2010 4:01 PM

    Say goodbye to a once dominant program… They JUST had the life support plug pulled out !!!!!!

  9. mrqtte says: Jun 10, 2010 4:09 PM

    LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

  10. TJ says: Jun 10, 2010 4:10 PM

    Ouch. The scholarships hurt but I’d think players being allowed to transfer and not waiting a year is more damaging

  11. Jagdbaer says: Jun 10, 2010 4:13 PM

    Lane Kiffin gets smacked again! Can’t hack it in the SEC so he goes home to the PAC 10 and now has to learn to deal (w/o vaseline). I don’t think the skippers of the Titanic or the Hindenburg had it any better.

  12. MosesZD says: Jun 10, 2010 4:13 PM

    lol. I can’t wait until Carroll bombs in Seattle. The punk can’t win without cheating and lying.

  13. Sweepthleg says: Jun 10, 2010 4:15 PM

    I stated this in the PTF article, but Bush needs just own up to these charges if they are true. There’s not going to be any backlash against him if he just says what eveyone already knows he was a top talent on a national powerhouse generate probably millions of dollars in merchandising and TV money. And he took some to help out his family and himself so what if some D-bags at the NCAA headquarters want to continue the farce of amtuer athletics at least in the College football realm.
    The NCAA may force USC to vacate those wins but that still doesn’t mean they didn’t happen. I remember those games so yeah they happened. College football and basketball players generate all the money for College athletics with exceptions in some areas for niche sports at certain universities.
    Realignment has some pros and cons to it as a whole to college football. The major pro is that it finally move us towards the playoff system that we all want by having the majority of relevant college powerhouses under 4 or 5 super conferences. The major con being that if a minor league like the UFL takes this coming moment to sieze an opportunity and start offering alternatives to 18 years coming out of high school to not go to college but to get paid to play football this could steer a lot of top talent away from colleges. Like the MLB system that allows players to be drafted out of high school and put into rookie leagues.
    These are interesting times as univeristies look away from regional relvance to more important monetary gain in conference affliation.
    (for the record I’m an SEC homer, Georgia Fan to be exact, not a USC fan, and I’m just making an argument about what all these events taking place might mean for College and Pro football down the road)

  14. ParkerFly says: Jun 10, 2010 4:20 PM

    Wow I really hate this for Lane Kiffin…not really.

  15. BrownsTown says: Jun 10, 2010 4:25 PM

    Lane knew it. That’s why he’s been recruiting 13 YOs. By the time he graduates (or reaches puberty), this will have all blown over.

  16. JaggedMark says: Jun 10, 2010 4:30 PM

    Lane, you could always leave for another job.
    Sincerely, Pete Carroll

  17. FratBoyXXX says: Jun 10, 2010 4:31 PM

    I think it’s good that the NCAA finally gave a strong penalty to one of the big boys. This is just as good as going to court to see a rich person or a celebrity going to jail, instead of light slap on the wrist.
    I’m guessing that a considerable amount of players will want to transfer after hearing this(can’t blame them either). Stripping away Reggie Bush’s Heisman would be like locking your garage after your car is already stolen. Doesn’t do any good at this point pal. Since they will have to vacate all the victories in which he played, does this mean they have to forfeit their National Title against Oklahoma? My guess is that they will, which is just as ridiculous and pointless as taking away Bush’s Heisman. These events happened 5 YEARS AGO. A player who redshirted in 2005, used up his last year of eligibility last season.
    Right now Lane Kiffin is finding out how big of a B*tch Carma can truly be.

  18. Arizona Buckeye says: Jun 10, 2010 4:37 PM

    The NCAA just roshamboed USC… OUCH

  19. Jason says: Jun 10, 2010 4:41 PM

    I doesn’t change the fact that USC kicked everyone’s ass the last 7 years, Reggie Bush still gained over 500 all purpose yards against Fresno State and the SEC still goes to bed every night wishing they had a team that could compete with Pete Carroll’s program.

  20. Buck Melanoma says: Jun 10, 2010 5:05 PM

    Hopefully Pete gets a nice warm reception by Seahawks players telling him what a POS he is.
    Coming from the Bellichick coaching tree, it’s no surprise that he’s a cheat.

  21. gator_prof says: Jun 10, 2010 5:06 PM

    Congrats USC!
    Garrett is a moron of epic proportions. Instead of fully cooperating and submitting like the basketball team, they stonewalled. Instead of hiring a good, clean coach, like Butch Davis, with a track record of cleaning programs, they hire Lane Kiffin (a.k.a., a walking NCAA violation). The arrogance play worked well! Congrats, you just lost your title (note singular!) and destroyed what was left of your program.

  22. Sean Martin says: Jun 10, 2010 5:35 PM

    Here is some knowledge you won’t be taught in any of your classes at your community college:
    Carroll is not, and never will be, from the Belichick tree. Not only is Carroll older than Belichick, he coached the Patriots prior to Bill.
    But you knew all this and just wanted to poke fun at the Patriots, right?

  23. atxcane says: Jun 10, 2010 5:36 PM

    ^^^ 4 years probation with Lane frickin’ Kiffin on staff? USC is done for. Any minor screwup and they get hammered again. Kiffin commits 1 secondary violation a week…their best bet is to tie him up and throw him in a closet for the next 4 years.

  24. Gatorfan1 says: Jun 10, 2010 5:47 PM

    OK let me get this straight. We have a program that has been getting investigated for 4-5 years.
    They were totally non-cooperative with any NCAA investigators.
    Their genius AD comes up with the great plan of sacrificing the basketball team in a very transparent attempt to save the football team and to also help make it look as if the school is serious about rules compliance.
    Then the head coach flees, (first clue something is amiss) of course the idiot fanbase could not connect the dots and made all sorts of ridiculous statements concerning the upcoming sanctions and the belief that it will be nothing more than a wrist slap. More like both arms getting cut off!!!
    If this wasn’t enough, said genius AD hires not only a coach who had already shown, in his short stint at Tennessee, a total lack of understanding or even caring about rules compliance, but also the coach who recruited Bush and was smack dab in the middle of all the allegations.
    Well that’s pretty much it…oh no wait there’s more….than we have probably the most protracted recruitment of an athlete in Henderson, who’s father proclaimed he’s been assured of light penalties or no penalties at all. He knew better, so it begs the question, how & why did he go there?
    It is quite evident that USC has embarked on a process of thinking that while the NCAA in currently hammering them, to hire a weasel who will illegally do anything to recruit and break rules without compunction, thinking that the NCAA will look the other way during the next 4 years so THEY don’t have to pass down the death penalty. The sleaze with Kiffin will never end. Actually, this last part is pretty smart by USC because let’s face it, we will never see another SMU.
    Did I leave anything out??? And you USC fans are supposedly clueless as to WHY the sanctions levied against the school were so serious!!!

  25. Ramivou says: Jun 10, 2010 5:56 PM

    Did the Sooners just win another championship?

  26. thirdandgoal says: Jun 10, 2010 6:06 PM

    So, you’re saying theres a chance….
    Trojans vs. Gophers @ TCF Bank Stadium

  27. TB3 says: Jun 10, 2010 7:10 PM

    So what are all you “haters” going to say if Kiffin sticks it out and brings USC back after this probation?
    What is the opposite of “I told you so,” “I’m sorry for bashing you, I didn’t understand how you business works.”
    You really think Coach Kiffin jumped from Knoxville to LA without knowing the sanctions were coming? If so that would make you more clueless than him. I’m pretty sure when he took the Oakland job he didn’t delete Coach Carroll’s number from his cell. So stop crying over USC beat downs. Its in the past.
    Just a little back ground. I’m an OU fan I’ve seen a USC beat down up close, so don’t try that angle. Also, I know all about NCAA probation, sanctions, cheating, and rules violations so those are tied up too. Give that 2004 Heisman to Vince Young (as much as it pains me to say it) and let Auburn claim the whole 2004 National Title.

  28. gator_prof says: Jun 10, 2010 9:04 PM

    Re: “So what are all you “haters” going to say if Kiffin sticks it out and brings USC back after this probation? ”
    I will check to see if purple snow is falling in Gainesville. Anything is possible, but there is nothing in his history indicating that he has what it takes to do this.
    I agree…give the title to Auburn.

  29. Gatorfan1 says: Jun 10, 2010 10:27 PM

    TB3 says:
    So what are all you “haters” going to say if Kiffin sticks it out and brings USC back after this probation?
    Well I guess we’ll have plenty of time to prepare ourselves……

  30. burntorangehorn says: Jun 11, 2010 10:21 AM

    Hey, Devon Kennard: you chose USC for a few reasons, one of which was that Petey said you could play end instead of linebacker, although you ended up being moved to LB anyway. Rarely does a player get a second chance like this, so how about calling Mack Brown up and heading east?

  31. BrownsTown says: Jun 11, 2010 10:33 AM

    Stoops = Two-time national title winner

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