Report: Bush will declare for NFL draft

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The day's state, national and world sports news

December 18, 2005

Reggie Bush reportedly is ready to run into the NFL draft pool.

Citing several sources, the Los Angeles Daily News reported yesterday that Bush will turn pro. Bush already is being advised by Reebok representative Mike Ornstein, the newspaper reported.

Reggie Bush, a Southern California junior, and other college football underclassmen have until Jan. 15 to declare for the draft.

Officially, Bush, who practiced Friday for the first time since winning the Heisman Trophy on Dec. 10, said he'll probably announce after the Rose Bowl whether he'll return to USC for his senior season.

"Right now, my main focus is beating Texas," he said Friday.

The 6-foot, 200-pound junior figures to be one of the top picks in April's NFL draft should he decide to pass up his final year of eligibility at USC.

The top-ranked Trojans (12-0) extended their winning streak to 34 on Dec. 3 by beating crosstown-rival UCLA, 66-19, assuring them a berth in the Rose Bowl, where they'll shoot for an unprecedented third straight national championship against No. 2 Texas.

Bush capped the Trojans' victory over UCLA by running for 260 yards and two touchdowns. When asked about Bush going to the NFL, his stepfather, LaMar Griffin, told ABC: "It's time to take it to the next level."

USC coach Pete Carroll said he'll address future options with several players next week.

"We're going to meet with the whole team first," he said. "Everybody has to know what's going on. We'll focus on guys who are under consideration. It's not time to make that decision."

Carroll still will hold an NFL seminar Tuesday, with several underclassmen who might skip their senior seasons, including Bush, tailback LenDale White, offensive tackle Winston Justice and safety Darnell Bing.

"We have a couple guys coming in to give their expertise to the team," Carroll told the Los Angeles Daily News. "Everyone needs to be educated."

On Friday, Carroll addressed reports that he wanted to return to the NFL, where he was a head coach for the New York Jets for one season and the New England Patriots for three before coming to USC in 2001.

"I'm used to it," he said. "This has happened for five years. I'm flattered. I'm not doing anything with anybody. I'm not talking with anybody. I can't be more emphatic. I'm not doing it - I love it here."

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