Sean 'Diddy' Combs' son on UCLA scholarship: 'I put that work in'
The 18-year-old son of hip-hop mogul Sean "Diddy" Combs defended his acceptance of a full athletic scholarship to play football at UCLA after some questioned whether he should give the money back to the cash-strapped school.
"Regardless what the circumstances are, I put that work in!!!!" Justin Combs tweeted Wednesday. "PERIOD."
The defensive back also shared a link to a CNN segment that questioned whether he should keep the $54,000 scholarship.
"Regardless of what you do in life every1 is gonna have their own opinion," he tweeted. "Stay focused, keep that tunnel vision & never 4get why u started."
Combs, a recent alumnus of New Rochelle Iona Prep in New York, announced in November he would play football at UCLA, effectively turning down scholarship offers from Illinois, Virginia and Wyoming.
As news of the scholarship spread this week, however, some questioned if the cash-strapped school's money should be used to fund the education of the son of a man worth $475 million.
UCLA was quick to defend the offer, saying the money used for Combs' scholarship wouldn't affect need-based scholarships awarded to other students.
University spokesman Ricardo Vazquez said the money used for merit-based athletic scholarships at UCLA was "entirely funded by Athletic Department ticket sales, corporate partnerships, media contracts and private donations" and "do not rely on state funds."
"There is a big separation between financial aid based on need and how that’s funded and how athletic scholarships are funded and awarded to students," Vazquez said in a statement.
Combs' scholarship is one of about 285 the university awards to student athletes each year, Vazquez said, and will be used to pay tuition and fees along with room and board.
"Unlike need-based scholarships, athletic scholarships are awarded to students strictly on the basis of their athletic and academic ability, and not on a student's financial need," Vazquez said.
The 5-foot-9, 170-pound defensive back reportedly graduated with a 3.75 GPA.
UCLA defensive backs coach Demetrice Martin told the Daily Bruin in February that Combs had a "tremendous upside."
“Football is very important to him and that’s one thing I love about him," Martin said. "He’s not just the son of a star … he really likes football.”
— Kate Mather
Image: A screen shot of Justin Combs' Twitter account. Credit: Twitter