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Joe McKnight rejoins Trojans

December 24, 2009 | 10:29 am

Joe Joe McKnight is back with the USC football team. But whether he'll play in the Emerald Bowl against Boston College on Saturday is still in question.

USC announced this morning that McKnight rejoined the team late Wednesday night and would practice today.

"Joe did everything he needed to do compliance-wise in L.A., so it was the right thing to get him up here right away," Coach Pete Carroll said in a statement released by the school. "Compliance hasn't made a final ruling, but this is a most favorable sign."

USC has been investigating McKnight's relationship with Santa Monica businessman Scott Schenter since The Times reported the junior tailback was driving a Land Rover registered to him.

McKnight told The Times he had not driven the car and that it was being driven by his girlfriend, Johanna Michelle Beltran, who is the mother of McKnight's 10-month-old son. Since then, USC has said McKnight had registered the car as one he was driving. Schenter says Beltran works for him and is a longtime family friend. He also said he helped her purchase the Land Rover but she was paying the insurance and making $500-a-month payments for it.

Schenter was expected to meet with USC officials earlier this week. He has not responded to questions from The Times asking him to explain his relationship with McKnight, Beltran or USC.

"We'll just play it out and see what happens from here," Carroll said of McKnight's situation. "In the meantime, it's great to have Joe back with us."

-- Mike Hiserman

Photo: Joe McKnight. Credit: Gary A. Vasquez / US Presswire

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