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USC Men's Basketball Receives Notice of Allegations Stemming from Federal Probe

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorDecember 14, 2019

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 25:  Assistant Coach Tony Bland of the USC Trojans cheers on the batch during the game against the UCLA Bruins at Galen Center on January 25, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

USC announced Friday that the NCAA has sent its men's basketball team a notice of allegations in regards to the actions of a former coach in the program.

The statement read as follows per Adam Grosbard of the Orange County Register:

“USC has received a Notice of Allegations from the NCAA related to a former coach in the men’s basketball program. USC has cooperated with the NCAA since it first became aware of the issues raised in the Notice of Allegations. Because the notice involves a pending NCAA case, USC is unable to discuss any of the allegations in or facts relating to the case. USC looks forward to an expeditious resolution of this matter.”

The coach in question is assistant Tony Bland, who was fired in January 2018. Emily Caron of Sports Illustrated outlined the charges against him, which were part of a larger college basketball corruption scandal involving multiple coaches and schools.

"Bland pleaded guilty in January to a felony count of conspiracy to commit bribery as part of a deal with prosecutors, admitting that he accepted $4,100 in cash–the least of the implicated coaches–to direct Trojans' players to use Christian Dawkins' sports management company after college," Caron wrote.

Bland was sentenced to two years of probation and 100 hours of community service.

The scandal also involved ex-Trojan (and current Memphis Grizzlies) guard De'Anthony Melton. Adam Schlabach of ESPN provided more details:

"In January 2018, USC suspended guard De'Anthony Melton for the entire season after determining a close family friend received an extra benefit. That friend, Dave Elliott, allegedly took a plane ticket and possibly payment for a hotel room at a basketball event in Las Vegas, according to Melton's attorney, Vicki Podberesky. Melton withdrew from the school the next month and turned pro."

Schlabach also reported USC is the fourth school involved in the scandal to receive a notice of allegations, with Kansas, North Carolina State and Oklahoma State the other three.

The NCAA is also looking into Arizona, Auburn, Creighton, Louisville and LSU, per Schlabach.