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Utupo cleared by NCAA

Aug 26, 2010, 10:07 PM EST

Good news for the Irish today as freshman Justin Utupo received clearance from the NCAA and had his eligibility restored. Utupo had been shelved temporarily since Tuesday when the NCAA’s clearinghouse took a look at some of the course work he completed at Lakewood High School.

“Justin Utupo was cleared today,” Kelly said after practice. “And I gotta tell you, the NCAA was incredible. Once they got the information, how they streamlined this was really good. And
then our people here, our compliance people were outstanding in getting
this done. He is a full qualifier, on aid and eligible to practice and
compete. So a full clearance.”

The NCAA also held out Utupo’s high school teammates, USC freshman quarterback Jesse Scroggins, who was also cleared to play to play today for the Trojans. While the details of Utupo’s eligibility issues are unclear, what was at issue for Scroggins was an independent study math course he took while attending high school, which put his math requirements in jeopardy.