Former USC Running Back Reggie Bush Files Defamation Lawsuit Against NCAA

Bush Challenges NCAA's Punishment in Light of New Name, Image, and Likeness Rules

In an announcement on Tuesday, it was revealed that Reggie Bush, a former running back for the USC Trojans, has initiated a defamation lawsuit against the NCAA. The action comes as Bush aims to challenge the NCAA’s past penalties he faced due to his involvement in accepting extra financial benefits during his tenure as a student-athlete at USC.

Reggie Bush, a prominent player of his time, had his 2005 Heisman Trophy revoked by the NCAA, along with the erasure of his records, as a result of the association’s strict measures aimed at sending a stern message. However, with the implementation of new rules surrounding name, image, and likeness, Bush is now asserting that he was unfairly singled out.

Back in 2010, Bush voluntarily surrendered his Heisman Trophy following an NCAA investigation that implicated both him and his family in receiving unauthorized financial perks. The investigation disclosed instances of cash acceptance, paid travel expenses, and even housing benefits during his tenure at USC. It was also revealed that Bush’s parents enjoyed rent-free living for an extended period and were granted a sum of $10,000.

These financial transactions clearly violated NCAA’s established policies at that time, leading to the punitive actions taken against him. The repercussions of this decision significantly impacted Bush’s reputation within the realm of college sports, thereby providing a valid basis for his current defamation lawsuit.

Enthusiasts of college football who were witnesses to Bush’s time as a member of the Trojans are well aware of his exceptional contributions. His pivotal role in guiding USC to the 2004 National Title, although later vacated by the NCAA, is a testament to his exceptional skills on the field.

“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,” according to a statement from law firm McCathern, PLLC.


Though the infractions were not of grave magnitude in the grand scheme of things, they were still in violation of the prevailing regulations. Over the years, college athletes have persistently advocated for fair financial compensation for their dedication and hard work, whether on the field or the court. Recent changes in the collegiate landscape have finally paved the way for players to capitalize on their personal brand, image, and likeness.

This move by the NCAA has been long awaited, and for Reggie Bush, the defamation lawsuit represents a chance to reclaim his reputation in the sports arena. Should the NCAA opt to reinstate Bush’s records, it would undoubtedly serve as a vindication of his position.

Gary Lee

Gary Lee, a mainstay at LA Sports Report, is not just a sports writer; he's a veritable institution in the realm of sports journalism. With an extensive and illustrious career that boasts stints with notable platforms like Sports Illustrated, Gary has consistently showcased an uncanny knack for capturing the essence of the game, regardless of the sport. His prowess isn't limited to the written word alone; Gary's vast experience extends to creating and curating sports websites, providing fans with in-depth analysis, up-to-date news, and captivating stories. For readers keen on insights into the Clippers, Dodgers, Galaxy, Kings, LAFC, Lakers, Rams, UCLA, and USC, Gary is your go-to guy.
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