USC basketball: Former Trojans guard Bryce Jones admits to off-the-court incidents during UNLV visit, report says
Former USC freshman guard Bryce Jones, who was given an ultimatum that he either leave the team or be dismissed in January, admitted to at least two off-the-court incidents that led to his departure from USC, according to a Las Vegas Sun newspaper report Thursday.
Jones, a former Woodland Hills Taft High standout, was in Las Vegas visiting Nevada Las Vegas, his first official visit as he looks to find another school to play basketball. He's also reportedly interested in San Diego State and Gonzaga.
The first indicent was an alleged altercation after a practice in the team locker room when Jones struck fellow freshman Garrett Jackson, fracturing his nose, teammates who witnessed the incident said. The second involved an alleged verbal altercation with a resident advisor in his dormitory.
Jones acknowledged to the newspaper that the first incident occurred, but disputed what his former teammates confirmed happened.
Jones said, according to the Sun, that "he and Jackson simply carried emotions over from the practice floor and hadn't yet cooled off upon leaving the practice floor. Jones added that he and Jackson smoothed the situation over later in the day, are still friends and still attend classes together."
As for the incident in the dorm, Jones said the verbal argument had to do with loud music in his room. He admitted fault in the matter.
"I knew it was going to come out sooner or later," Jones told the newspaper. "I just want to separate and move on. I want [a fresh start] pretty bad."
Jones added in regards to telling his side of what happened at USC, "I'm not into retaliation. Hopefully, wherever I go, they'll take my word for it that nothing [bad] happened."
Jones, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard who was USC's top recruit in its 2010 class, started USC's first 10 games, averaging 11.2 points in 28.1 minutes. But after junior guard Jio Fontan, a transfer from Fordham, became eligible, Jones became a reserve.
In his final eight games, Jones played an average of 11.1 minutes, at times letting his frustration show even when USC Coach Kevin O'Neill called on him to enter games.
-- Baxter Holmes
Photo: Bryce Jones slam dunks in a game against UC Irvine Nov. 13, 2010. Credit: Christina House/For The Times