USC will investigate report of gifts to athletes

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LOS ANGELES (AP) - Southern California athletic director Pat Haden says USC will investigate a Los Angeles Times report claiming two Trojans athletes received gifts from an employee of the Los Angeles County assessor’s office.

The Times reported Saturday that former tailback Joe McKnight and former men’s basketball player Davon Jefferson apparently received a car, an airline ticket and cash from Scott Schenter.

The former appraiser is under investigation in an apparently unrelated scandal at the assessor’s office. His interest in the two athletes wasn’t immediately apparent.

Haden says USC investigated reports of McKnight using a Land Rover registered to Schenter in 2009. The school worked with the NCAA, which didn’t process a violation.

Haden says the school wasn’t aware of additional gifts to the two athletes. USC already has discussed the report with the NCAA and Pac-12.

Haden replaced Mike Garrett in July 2010.

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