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Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Maurice Jones won't return to USC

By Pedro Moura
ESPNLosAngeles.com

LOS ANGELES -- USC point guard Maurice Jones plans to transfer, his coach confirmed to ESPNLosAngeles.com on Wednesday.

Jones, the Trojans' leading scorer last season, was ruled academically ineligible earlier this month and was dismissed from the university. He had not been enrolled in classes at USC this semester.

Maurice Jones, Kevin O;Neill
Guard Maurice Jones won't return to USC, Trojans coach Kevin O'Neill (right) confirmed Wednesday.

Trojans coach Kevin O'Neill said Jones told him last week of his intent to transfer, but he has not yet received his release.

"I support whatever Mo Jones wants to do," ONeill said.

Jones, 20, announced the news on his private Twitter account early Wednesday morning.

The junior started all 32 of USC's games during the 2011-12 season, averaging a team-high 13 points and 3.5 assists. He also started 25 of USC's 34 games in 2010-11 as a freshman, averaging 9.9 points, 3.2 assists and 2.0 steals.

O'Neill told ESPN.com's Andy Katz earlier this month that he expected Jones back after the upcoming season.

"There's no question that we have a plan for him to be successful and graduate and we want to make sure that happens," O'Neill told Katz.

O'Neill told ESPNLosAngeles.com on Wednesday that he'd still be open to the possibility of Jones returning to school.

"If Mo wants to come back, I'd love to welcome him back," O'Neill said.

Jones could be not reached for comment Wednesday. Potential transfer destinations are not known at this time.