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College admissions scandal: UCLA men's soccer coach Jorge Salcedo resigns in wake of bribery allegations

Los Angeles Times logo Los Angeles Times 3/22/2019 By Ben Bolch, Los Angeles Times

FILE - In this Dec. 14, 2014 file photo, UCLA coach Jorge Salcedo reacts during the first half of an NCAA College Cup championship soccer game against Virginia in Cary, N.C. Salcedo was charged along with nearly 50 other people Tuesday, March 12, 2019, in a scheme in which wealthy parents bribed college coaches and insiders at testing centers to get their children into some of the most elite schools in the country, federal prosecutors said. UCLA said that Salcedo has been placed on leave pending a review and will have no involvement with the team.  (AP Photo/Gerry Broome, File) © ASSOCIATED PRESS FILE - In this Dec. 14, 2014 file photo, UCLA coach Jorge Salcedo reacts during the first half of an NCAA College Cup championship soccer game against Virginia in Cary, N.C. Salcedo was charged along with nearly 50 other people Tuesday, March 12, 2019, in a scheme in which wealthy parents bribed college coaches and insiders at testing centers to get their children into some of the most elite schools in the country, federal prosecutors said. UCLA said that Salcedo has been placed on leave pending a review and will have no involvement with the team. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome, File) Mar. 22--UCLA men's soccer coach Jorge Salcedo resigned in the wake of his alleged involvement in accepting $200,000 in bribes to help enroll two players using fake athletic profiles, an athletic department official confirmed Thursday.

Salcedo had been placed on leave since being indicted last week on charges of conspiracy to commit racketeering after facilitating the acceptance of one female and one male student to the school under the pretense of being soccer players even though they did not play the sport competitively.

One of those students, Lauren Isackson, was part of the women's soccer team in 2017 despite no previous experience, according to prosecutors. Her parents have been implicated as part of a wide-ranging scheme to enroll the children of privileged families into top-tier universities across the country.

Salcedo is alleged to have received a $100,000 payment for his role in Isackson's admission to UCLA from William Rick Singer, the founder of a Newport Beach-based college prep business, the Edge & Career Network, which created fake profiles for prospective students.

According to court documents, Singer also mailed Salcedo a check for $100,000, drawn on a fake charitable account, in October 2018 for his help in enrolling the son of another Singer client. The student did not play competitive soccer but was designated as a recruit for the men's soccer team by Salcedo and admitted to UCLA.

Salcedo, who rose from UCLA ball boy to coach after starring for the Bruins and winning three national championships as a player in the 1990s, compiled a 182-89-4 record in 15 seasons. He guided the team to 14 NCAA tournaments and national championship game appearances in 2006 and 2014.

UCLA has initiated a review of the allegations facing its soccer programs. Women's soccer coach Amanda Cromwell did not respond to a request for comment from The Times earlier this week.

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