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May 23, 2008

Former USC star Mayo dropped by agent

LOS ANGELES - Former USC basketball star O.J. Mayo has been dropped by his agent ahead of the June 26 NBA draft because of the "overwhelming intensity" of allegations that Mayo illegally received cash and gifts.

Mayo had announced that Calvin Andrews of Bill Duffy Associates would represent him. But the Walnut Creek, Calif.-based sports management group issued a statement Thursday saying their association was over.

"Due to the overwhelming intensity of recent allegations regarding the recruitment of O.J. Mayo, we feel that our representation of him is a distraction for he and his family at this time," the statement said.

"This should be the best time in his life and anything that takes away from that enjoyment and the experience of this process is not fair to him."

BDA Sports said it will ask the NBA Players Association to waive the standard 15-day cooling off period so Mayo could sign with a new agent immediately.

Among the NBA players represented by BDA are Carmelo Anthony, Greg Oden, Steve Nash and Yao Ming.

Louis Johnson, a former associate of Mayo's, told ESPN that events promoter Rodney Guillory received money from BDA Sports and funneled cash and gifts to Mayo, who played one season at USC before declaring for the draft.

Mayo has denied the allegations, which are being investigated by the NCAA, Pacific-10 Conference and USC.

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