BCS Might Strip Southern California’s 2004 Football Title
The USC Trojans football program received another blow when an appeal of NCAA sanctions was rejected. The sanctions came as a result of improper benefits received by Reggie Bush in 2004 and included a two-year postseason ban (first year served in 2010) and the forfeiture of 30 scholarships during the next three seasons. There is also a possibility that the Trojans will have their 2004 National Championship win vacated. USC hoped to have its postseason ban reduced to one year and have the scholarship reductions decreased to 15 over the next three years.
The decision to vacate the championship will be decided by BCS officials and there is no timetable for that decision. If the Trojans do lose their 2004 title, it will remain vacant. The championship will not be awarded to Auburn or Utah, the other two undefeated teams that year.
The 2004 Trojans were a powerhouse team that included eight first-round NFL draft picks and a total of 53 players that spent time on an NFL roster after leaving the school. The team went 13-0 and won the BCS Championship in a blowout victory over Oklahoma. End-of-the-year accolades for the Trojans included six first-team All-Americans as well as the Heisman Trophy, Walter Camp Award and AP Player of the year awarded to quarterback, Matt Leinart. Reggie Bush went on to win the Heisman in 2005 but voluntarily returned it in 2010 as a result of the investigation and subsequent penalties from the improper benefits he received while at USC.