SDSU Players Questioned Amid USD Scandal

By Michelle Wayland
|  Wednesday, Apr 20, 2011  |  Updated 5:13 PM PDT
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Former USD Athletes, Coach Tied to Bribery Sting

NBC San Diego

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Who Are the USD Scandal Suspects?

New details were revealed Tuesday about several defendants accused of bribing players, fixing games and distributing drugs.

Former USD Athletes, Coach Tied to Bribery Sting

10 defendants allegedly conspired to bribe basketball players to alter the outcome of games so the defendants could profit by betting on games at Las Vegas casinos, according to the indictment.
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Several San Diego State men's basketball students were interviewed by FBI agents concerning a bribery case involving former University of San Diego players and a coach but were not accused of any wrongdoing, according to SDSU officials.

Federal authorities announced last week that Brandon Johnson, USD’s all-time leading scorer, former coach T.J. Brown and former player Brandon Dowdy were among 10 people charged in the bribery case.
 
“The SDSU student-athletes were interviewed due to having a social acquaintanceship with one or more of the defendants,” said Assistant Athletic Director Mike May.

He says the students fully cooperated with FBI agents

“At no time during this process were any of the San Diego State student-athletes the focus of the investigation or accused of any wrongdoing,” said May.

He says department SDSU athletic department officials have been told there is no plan for additional interviews with the student-athletes.

“If circumstances change, the student-athletes are available to assist federal agents in any way possible,” said May.

Operation “Hook Shot” was a one-year investigation that at first focused on marijuana but soon expanded once the allegations of bribery and sports betting were uncovered.

Agents executed four search warrants last Monday at various residences and one business, a convenience store, in San Diego County.

The indictment, handed up by a federal grand jury April 8, alleges the defendants enriched themselves by operating an illegal sports bookmaking business and distributing marijuana.

With the criminal proceeds, the defendants allegedly conspired to bribe NCAA Div 1 college basketball players to alter the outcome of games so the defendants could profit by betting on games at Las Vegas casinos, according to the indictment.

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