Mayo says he’s still a Trojan

LAS VEGAS – Southern Cal can disassociate itself from O.J. Mayo(notes), but the Memphis Grizzlies guard says he will forever remain a Trojan.

USC announced Tuesday it will remove any references to Mayo and former Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush from the school. The decision comes in the wake of the NCAA hitting the university with severe sanctions for major rules violations, most of which involved illegal benefits to Bush and Mayo. The NCAA’s investigation was spurred by Yahoo! Sports’ reports into both Bush and Mayo.

“I’m sorry the decision that was made cost them whatever it cost them,” said Mayo, who played just one season at USC. “But at the same time, taking down any mural they have of me and any name of anything I’ve done in the programs, it can never take away that I am a Trojan.

“I did attend that university and it’s an experience they can’t take away no matter how they much try to take it away. They can’t take it away. No matter how much the NCAA doesn’t want it to exist, I still went to those great classrooms with the great professors and learned something from them. As far as athletics, I gave 110, 120 percent every time I went on the court.

“I enjoyed the dorm room life, riding the bike to school. I enjoyed those experiences that they never can take away from me.”

When asked if he still wanted to be announced in the Grizzlies’ starting lineup as coming from USC, Mayo said: “I am loyal to the end no matter what – good, bad or ugly.”

“Whatever investigation that they did, what was found, what wasn’t found, all I know is the decision was made,” Mayo said. “It wasn’t positive on my end, but at the same time the decision was made and no matter what I say … it’s not going to change.”


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Updated Wednesday, Jul 21, 2010