So That USC Player Who Jumped Off a Balcony to Save His Nephew? Yeah, He Made it Up

In this Nov. 9, 2013, file photo, Southern California cornerback Josh Shaw, left, lines up against California defensive back Isaac Lapite during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game in Berkeley, Calif.
USC defensive back Josh Shaw admitted to USC officials on Wednesday that he made up the story that he injured both his ankles jumping off a balcony to save his nephew from drowning. –AP

It was such a heroic story: USC football player throws caution to the wind, jumps off a second story balcony, suffers injuries to both of his ankles, all to save his 7-year-old nephew from drowning.

Well, turns out the player made the whole thing up.

Defensive back Josh Shaw, the player who made national headlines due to the story, admitted to USC officials on Wednesday that he completely fabricated the story, and the only truth was that he did injure both of his ankles jumping off a balcony

USC coach Steve Sarkisian released a statement on Wednesday to address the incident and Shaw’s admission:

“We are extremely disappointed in Josh,’’ said USC head football coach Steve Sarkisian. “He let us all down. As I have said, nothing in his background led us to doubt him when he told us of his injuries, nor did anything after our initial vetting of his story.

“I appreciate that Josh has now admitted that he lied and has apologized. Although this type of behavior is out of character for Josh, it is unacceptable. Honesty and integrity must be at the center of our program. I believe Josh will learn from this. I hope that he will not be defined by this incident, and that the Trojan Family will accept his apology and support him.’’

Sarkisian also said on Wednesday that Shaw has been suspended indefinitely from all team activities.

The university began investigating the incident on Tuesday after they received calls that contradicted the story told to them by Shaw.


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