USC president Carol L. Folt announced today that Lynn Swann, NFL Hall of Famer and wide receiver for the 1972 national champion Trojans, has resigned as athletic director after just over three years on the job.
“Lynn has been a leader on and off the field at USC for nearly five decades, and he will forever be a valued member of the Trojan family,” Folt said in a statement. “Lynn has led our athletics department to five national championships in five different women’s and men’s sports during his tenure. Our student-athletes’ cumulative GPA for the past two years and our graduation rate of 86 percent last year were all-time highs for USC athletics. We appreciate Lynn’s leadership of the department over these past three years and will continue to be grateful for his historic contributions to USC.”
Earlier this year the school’s athletics department found itself at the center of the infamous Varsity Blues admissions scandal, in which current and former members of the department are accused of allegedly accepting bribes and creating fake athlete profiles to create a side door for acceptance, including senior associate athletic director Donna Heinel, who was fired in March. At the time of the investigation’s announcement by federal prosecutors, Swann said he was “blindsided” by the scandal.
Folt told the Los Angeles Times that the scandal “was not a part of the decision for me,” explaining that she is building her own team, and Swann was being professional by allowing her to do so.
Dave Roberts, the NCAA’s vice chair of the committee on infractions, and a special adviser to the USC president, will serve as interim director of athletics while the university conducts a nationwide search for Swann’s permanent replacement, Folt said.