The LA County Assessors office has provided the NCAA with emails related to extra benefits which were allegedly provided to former USC student-athletes Joe McKnight and Davon Jefferson by Scott Schenter:
The Times obtained Schenter’s work emails from the assessor’s office under the California Public Records Act. A May 2008 email from Delta Air Lines to Schenter includes a receipt for his purchase of a $625 flight from Los Angeles to New Orleans. The listed passenger: “Joe McKnight.” Schenter also told The Times that he gave McKnight a Chevrolet Monte Carlo, which was referred to in a 2009 email from an automobile insurance agent.
Getting documentation of violations is always one of the NCAA’s major challenges. In this case, the extra benefits being tied up in a corruption scandal involving a municipal office makes it easy for the NCAA to obtain emails and paper records, since the NCAA can use public records requests just as the LA Times did.
Then again, whether the benefits were provided and whether they were impermissible do not seem to be at issue. The bigger question is how the NCAA treats a case involving violations that occurred around the same time as a much larger infractions case. The most relevant thing in these emails would be anything which shows that USC staff members were involved.