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BobZag
05-11-2008, 05:43 PM
http://sports.espn.go.com/broadband/video/videopage?videoId=3390571&categoryId=2378529

But does it really surprise anybody?

kitzbuel
05-11-2008, 05:48 PM
Some further in depth links here:

http://www.guboards.spokesmanreview.com/showthread.php?p=221110#post221110

MickMick
05-11-2008, 06:40 PM
Mayo had his pick of schools and he chose USC. With that choice he got a school that brought exactly what he was looking for. A blind eye and a history (ie....Reggie Bush). Perhaps upon the recommendation of BDA ;)

drnoe
05-15-2008, 09:02 AM
http://www.presstelegram.com/sports/ci_9263999

On the wrong side of the story
Doug Krikorian, Sports columnist
Article Launched: 05/14/2008 11:24:35 PM PDT

On the uneven journey of life, we are presented with countless paths to choose and decisions to make that will form the foundation of our existence.

Wind up in the wrong relationship, and perpetual agony ensues.

Hang with a bad crowd, and legal problems loom. Ignore culinary and alcohol moderation, and health miseries arise.

Squander an innate skill, and be forever tormented by regret.

It's the latter that came to mind the other day when I heard that a former Long Beach Press-Telegram colleague named Louis Johnson went on ESPN's "Outside The Lines" show and revealed in detail to Kelly Naqui about the alleged improper relationship that the USC freshman basketball star O.J. Mayo had with a gentleman named Rodney Guillory.

Johnson alleged, among other things, that Mayo had accepted more than $30,000 in cash and that Guillory took about $200,000 from NBA agent Bill Duffy to entice Mayo into joining Duffy's agency, which he did.

It would have been nice if Louis Johnson had broken the story as a journalist because he was a terrific sportswriter during his tenure with the Press-Telegram who I thought had the potential to develop into a great one.

Instead, he's being euphemistically referred to as a whistleblower, although I'm not sure it'll be his destiny to be remembered as fondly as others who have decided to come forward with startling revelations like Jeffery Wigand did against the tobacco industry and Erin Brockovich did against the Pacific Gas & Electric Comapy.

Indeed, Louis Johnson admittedly was an associate of Guillory - Johnson has been referred to as a runner - and a friend of Mayo who, apparently, had a serious falling out with Guillory.

Now whether Johnson's decision to go public with his allegations was motivated by revenge against Guillory, as many are insisting, or to awaken Mayo to the sinister people that surround him, as Johnson claims, is irrelevant to me.

I simply felt a sense of sadness when I was told Louis Johnson was at the epicenter of a controversy that could result in serious punishment for the USC basketball program by the NCAA, as well as cast a ominously darkening light on the entire USC athletic program in the wake of the Reggie Bush investigation.

You see, Lou Johnson has been a friend of mine, an affable young man I often have given counsel to, whose work with this newspaper was exceptional, who seemed destined to me to have a bright future in the business.

I lost contact with Johnson when he departed the Press-Telegram a few years ago to join a sports marketing group, and attempts to reach him this week have been unsuccessful.

But his Sunday morning appearance on "Outside The Lines" was a surprising development to those who know the 1989 graduate of Dominguez High.

"I just happened to turn on ESPN, and saw Louis on the screen and said to myself, 'Hey, I know that guy,"' says Willie Donerson, the long-time Dominguez High football coach. "Why did he do that? I just don't understand it. I'm totally shocked. I had no idea he even associated with those people."

Jim McCormack, the former Press-Telegram sports editor, had similar feelings.

"When I think about people at the paper that made the Press-Telegram sports section so special, Louis was one of those dear to my heart," he says. "And this is heartbreaking to me to find him in this situation.

"Louis had an incredible rapport and credibility with the high school community. He wrote some tremendous articles for us, and had the potential to be a marvelous journalist."

But Louis Johnson didn't remain anchored in one place for long.

He left the Press-Telegram for a desk position with the Orange County Register, then departed there for a similar job at Foxsports.com before returning again to the Press-Telegram.

"Louis was always very concerned about the well-being of his young daughter and mother," relates McCormack. "I think he made some short-sighted decisions in changing jobs so often."

A person who worked the preps with Johnson at the Press-Telegram, Steve Irvine, remembers Johnson when he was a senior at Dominguez.

"I first met Lou on the sidelines while covering one of the Dons' games," recalls Irvine, now with the Birmingham, Ala., News.

"He was a bright kid, very intelligent. I think he might have been his class' valedictorian.

"And he was a very talented journalist. What I always admired about him was his work ethic and his loyalty. But Lou was always looking for that one big thing that would make him rich."

"I remember Louis as being a talented writer who had a terrific feel for sports," says Frank Burlison, the Press-Telegram's Hall of Fame basketball writer. "He was a tremendously hard worker."

"I first hired Lou to work the phones on Friday nights during the high school football season, and he started working other nights when preps were playing," says McCormack. "He was very enthusiastic, and we saw flashes of excellence in the stories he wrote during that time in the early 1990s."

But it's all different now for Louis Johnson.

He's become a central figure in a national story by pointing the finger of blame at a person with whom he once was closely aligned and, in the process, bringing withering widespread scrutiny to USC athletics.

It wouldn't have surprised me once to have seen Louis Johnson on ESPN, but I would have thought it would have been as a commentator on one of its myriad talking head shows, not in the role he was seen portraying Sunday that seemed so out of character for a fellow I wished had remained a newspaperman.

doug.krikorian@presstelegram.com

CDC84
05-15-2008, 10:32 AM
http://www.sportingnews.com/yourturn/viewtopic.php?t=411968

CDC84
05-15-2008, 11:08 AM
From a recent Gary Parrish blog at cbssports.com:

Posted on: May 14, 2008 12:50 amScore: 91Log-in to rate:Log-in to rate: Log-in to rate:

DeRozan might be back on the market, it seems.

Will O.J. Mayo cost Southern California its next freshman star?

"His main thing is, he wants to go (to USC) and help build the basketball program," Frank DeRozan, father of USC signee DeMar DeRozan, told the Los Angeles Times on Tuesday. "But we can't do that with a cloud hanging over the school's head."

So yeah, USC fans, it actually can get worse.

Not only has Mayo damaged the reputation of your program by allegedly receiving thousands of dollars in gifts and cash from a "runner" for an agent before and during his one year of college, but now it appears the allegations could cause the Trojans' top incoming prospect to ask for a release and re-open his recruitment. DeRozan is a consensus top five prospect, a likely one-and-done player like Mayo. And according to family members, he is not interested in playing at a school that won't be eligible for next season's NCAA tournament.

The NCAA has announced it is investigating the allegations surrounding Mayo.

A postseason ban for USC is a possibility.

"If (USC) can't make the tournament next year, that's what we're going to college for," Jermaine DeRozan, DeMar's half-brother, told the Los Angeles Times. "If you do your one year, you at least have to shine and get to the tournament with the intentions of winning it or get to the Elite Eight.

"I'm just hoping SC doesn't get put on probation," he added. "(If it does), I would get . . . out of there."

DeRozan's coach at Compton High, Tony Thomas, said schools are positioning themselves to land DeRozan if he asks for a release. He told the Los Angeles Times that assistant coaches from two of the Final Four teams -- which were Kansas, Memphis, North Carolina and UCLA -- have already called.

"They wanted to make sure if anything happened, don't forget about them," Thomas said.

ZagNative
05-15-2008, 11:53 AM
Don't you think that the likely outcome of this story will be:


No repercussions for OJ Mayo
Some kind of sanctions - loss of scholarships, or even a ban on post-season play for USC
Nothing will change

DeCourcy seems to be pinning the blame on society and I don't see him offering any remedies. His conclusion:

This is about viewing young athletes as commodities

Because the best basketball players generally are identifiable by the time they are in their mid-teens, it's easier for agents and their representatives to gain influence.

The best offensive tackle might not be obvious until he's a junior in college. To sign him, an agent almost invariably will have to preserve some relationship with the college where he plays, so abusing the system is counterproductive. With basketball, the agents often get there first.

Certainly there are some colleges just as likely to exploit teenaged ballers. But most offer something of lasting value in return: an education if it's wanted, exposure that helps build the player's brand, or, at the very least, high-level basketball training that can lead to greater competitive success (and the wealth that results). An agent might hand over some money or the keys to a new ride. The truth, though, is eventually that agent will find a way to be repaid. Jeff Goodman's blog (http://msn.foxsports.com/cbk/story/8134180/) pinned at least some of the blame on the NBA rules forcing kids into college for a year.

The NBA and NCAA recently created an initiative which is targeted to enhance youth basketball programs. The two sides will need to take a close look at how they can attempt to limit the contact between agents, runners and young players.

The one-and-done age limit is just a piece to the overall process. Allowing kids to go to the NBA directly out of high school would help, but it wouldn't completely eliminate the issue. Even if the O.J. Mayos of the world were able to head to the NBA directly out of high school, that wouldn't solve the problem because it's not just the handful of kids who are talented enough to go straight from preps to pros who are being targeted by agents and runners.

It's become a widespread issue. Mayo reportedly received about $30,000 in cash, clothes and other gifts from Guillory. He's not alone.

Should USC coach Tim Floyd and his staff have tried to control the relationship between Guillory and Mayo? Absolutely.

However, the only reason Floyd ever got a player of Mayo's caliber on his campus was because of Guillory. In all likelihood, he just looked the other way and didn't ask any questions.

But Floyd isn't the primary issue here. He's the last line of defense. And sometimes it's just too late by the time these kids ever get on campus.I wish I didn't feel so cynical about the NCAA and its desire and willingness to do anything other than further the interests of the institutions and college coaches - especially the most powerful institutions and coaches and occasionally preen and make announcements that seem calculated to do little other than score some PR points and preserve its power structure.

It's been hinted at on this board that AAU coaches or other interests on the west side of the mountains have funneled some of Washington players to teams not including Gonzaga. There's a lengthy thread elsewhere on this board about why we're not getting the best kids from the coast to come to Gonzaga. Do we really have a chance with those kids when they are being influenced by Guillory-like folks?

And while we can sneer at USC and suspect its role here, what's to protect our coaching staff from these types of allegations? I know that Few & Co. have a pretty impeccable reputation, but do they make the rounds of the kids' rooms to look for suspicious swag? The coaching equivalent of being net-worthed by the IRS. ("Hey, kid. You've got no income. Did your Mama and Daddy buy you that?" "Hey, Matty, how'd you afford all those cars? What do you mean, 'They're all clunkers?'")

vandalzag
05-15-2008, 12:20 PM
I was at Idaho when Floyd and then Kermit was coaching there. Had some friends that were on the team etc... Both coaches readily embraced the "Friends of the Program" concept and that was at little ol U of I. I can only imagine the workings at USC. Always thought the Mayo to USC story left out some of the details, Floyd sounded just to wholesome.

kingusc
05-15-2008, 04:50 PM
Hey guys -

I've posted here very rarely and on the old board a little more, but some of you know that I'm a USC guy and the world's biggest Zag fan (okay, maybe not, but that's how I feel).

Let's wait for things to shake down a little, pardon the pun. There are some difficult facts to understand here. For instance, the allegation is that OJ Mayo received $30,000 over 4 years - that's hard to believe, isn't it? OJ Mayo is worth a boatload more than $9K a year to any agent. OJ has denied it boldly and publicly, and I think it is only fair to hold off judgment.

It could all be true, and it may not be. But I'd echo the statement made above about caution with the Zag players - if you think this is happening (if at all), only at USC, you are sorely, sorely mistaken.

One last point - last year we lost two scholarships because our Gabe Pruitt and Nick Young left school before finishing spring semester. OJ Mayo is driving a Porsche these days now that he's signed with an agent and can begin cashing in on his talent. But he finished his finals this week. Why? Because he fulfilled a promise he gave to Tim Floyd not to leave early and cost the Trojans more scholarships. He's been a good kid - a kid of his word - and I'm going to take his word for it for now.

LongIslandZagFan
05-16-2008, 07:00 AM
Let's wait for things to shake down a little, pardon the pun. There are some difficult facts to understand here. For instance, the allegation is that OJ Mayo received $30,000 over 4 years - that's hard to believe, isn't it? OJ Mayo is worth a boatload more than $9K a year to any agent. OJ has denied it boldly and publicly, and I think it is only fair to hold off judgment.

If the source wasn't someone that was close to him and that could produce receipts and such then I might be willing to have a sliver of doubt.


It could all be true, and it may not be. But I'd echo the statement made above about caution with the Zag players - if you think this is happening (if at all), only at USC, you are sorely, sorely mistaken.

Thats like saying if everyone else commits murder then it is OK.



One last point - last year we lost two scholarships because our Gabe Pruitt and Nick Young left school before finishing spring semester. OJ Mayo is driving a Porsche these days now that he's signed with an agent and can begin cashing in on his talent. But he finished his finals this week. Why? Because he fulfilled a promise he gave to Tim Floyd not to leave early and cost the Trojans more scholarships. He's been a good kid - a kid of his word - and I'm going to take his word for it for now.

Yep and he also had a flat screen TV while attending school.