PRLog - July 21, 2010 - TEMECULA, Calif. -- President-elect of the University of Southern California, C.L. Max Nikias, announced Tuesday afternoon that long-time Athletic Director, Mike Garrett will be replaced by Pat Haden. The 66-year-old Garrett leaves amidst severe controversy after a 17 year stint in one of the most coveted jobs in college sports. As the NCAA has levied major sanctions against the USC program, Nikias announced in a memo that not only would the University's relationship with Garrett be terminated, but that the Trojans would make further house cleaning efforts by returning Reggie Bush's 2005 Heisman Trophy, currently on display at the USC campus, to the Heisman Trophy Trust.
The Bush Heisman Trophy on display at USC
USC will further their exterminating efforts by removing all jerseys, images, and other items erected as recognition of either Bush or former Trojan basketball player, O.J. Mayo, from Heritage Hall, the Galen Center, and the LA Memorial Coliseum. Nikias dictated in his memo that these moves were to be completed by mid-August, when incoming students are expected to begin arriving. Mayo, currently with the Memphis Grizzlies of the NBA, left USC carrying his own suitcase full of alleged NCAA violations.
Although the Reggie Bush Heisman at USC is only a replica of the original, the school is clearly making a statement to distance itself from all things connected with the tarred years leading up to the sanctions. Perhaps this is an effort to lessen the blow of the NCAA's hammer, as USC has appealed the disciplinary actions.
Garrett himself was a Heisman Trophy winner back in 1965 and Pat Haden was a standout quarterback and Rhodes Scholar for the Trojans in the late 1970's prior to an NFL career with the Los Angeles Rams. He is known to be a beloved USC supporter and his reputation as a pillar of integrity will be much needed to restore confidence in what surely will be a program looking for a transfusion.
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Greg Preite is a 1992 graduate of the University of Southern California. He is currently a successful writer, business owner, and consultant residing in Temecula, CA.
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