Former USC Star Reggie Bush Suing NCAA For Defamation

The saga continues for Reggie Bush and the NCAA. The former running back for the University of Southern California is suing the nonprofit organization for defamation.

The NCAA issued a statement to ESPN and other media outlets in July 2021 in response to someone wondering whether Bush’s NCAA records could be restored after their rule changes surrounding players’ names, images, and likenesses. The College Football Hall Of Fame inductee was required to disassociate from USC and had his 2005 Heisman Trophy vacated for receiving “extra benefits” during his 2003-2005 tenure at the university.

“Although college athletes can now receive benefits from their names, images, and likenesses through activities like endorsements and appearances, NCAA rules still do not permit pay-for-play type arrangements,” an NCAA spokesperson stated. “The NCAA infractions process exists to promote fairness in college sports. The rules that govern fair play are voted on, agreed to ,and expected to be upheld by all NCAA member schools.” In essence, they had no plans of returning the trophy to him.

Reggie Bush is still looking to get his Heisman Trophy reinstated, and this lawsuit could assist in that endeavor. “The lawsuit is based on the NCAA maliciously attacking his character through a completely false and highly offensive statement that was widely reported in the media and substantially and irreparably damaged his reputation,” law firm McCathern, PLLC wrote. He plans to speak on the matter at a news conference on Wednesday morning (Aug. 23) at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Reggie Bush was drafted to the New Orleans Saints in 2006 and helped them win a Super Bowl in 2010. As a result, he was inducted into the franchise’s Hall Of Fame in 2019. He was also named to the NFL PFWA All-Rookie team in 2006. Bush rushed for 5,490 yards, had 3598 receiving yards, and 58 total touchdowns throughout his NFL career before retiring in 2017.

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