OJ Mayo Allegations

A recent investigation into USC guard OJ Mayo has found that over the past several years he’s been improperly receiving cash and gifts. Ok, and this comes as a surprise to who? Obviously, he’s denying the allegations, but let’s be for real…this story is probably true. I’m not going to take the position of condemning him for this like some people would, because I’ve seen it before and I’m certainly not surprised. What people need to realize is that this kind of stuff has been going on for years. Some of it gets reported, a whole lot of it doesn’t and as usual, the bigger the athletes name, the closer the microscope.

The reason that this situation is so big is because it appears that a lot of these benefits were given to Mayo through a “runner” by the name of Rodney Guillory who was associated with Bill Duffy and his sports agency, BDA Sports Management. There was reportedly at least $200,000 given to Guillory from BDA during the time OJ was in HS and at USC. Of that money $30,000 supposedly went to Mayo in exchange for his agreeing to sign with BDA once he turned pro (which he did). BDA currently represents NBA players like Steve Nash, Yao Ming and Carmelo Anthony (that explains those Laker tickets). Obviously, this is illegal…VERY illegal, but it happens ALL THE TIME. The thing is, these allegations won’t hurt Mayo in the least. He’s still guaranteed to be a Lottery pick in June and he’s still going to make a ton of money playing professional basketball. This could affect the HS teams he won state championships for in Ohio and West Virginia and it’s yet another black eye for the USC Trojans. Dwayne Jarrett and Reggie Bush were recently accused of receiving improper benefits while being enrolled at the school. In 2000, former USC basketball player Jeff Trapagnier was also accused (and suspended) of illegally receiving benefits (airfare) from Guillory as well. Sports is a BILLION dollar business and because of that, this isn’t the first or the last time that you’ll hear a story like this being told. But we need to stop painting the student athlete as the criminal and focus on the shady indivduals behind the scenes that make all of this possible.