NCAA to USC: There's no comparison
Despite recent talks between the two sides, the NCAA on Friday turned down an appeal by USC asking to gradually reduce the penalties that have plagued the Trojans' program since 2010.
USC athletic director Pat Haden and Dave Roberts, USC's vice president for athletic compliance, met with NCAA president Mark Emmert and other officials this week in Indianapolis after the NCAA decided to reduce sanctions levied against Penn State in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal.
"There is no comparison between USC and Penn State," the NCAA said in a statement Friday. "USC's appeal was denied, and there is no further consideration being given."
A source familiar with USC's case had told ESPN's Joe Schad it was unlikely the NCAA would grant relief because USC went through a traditional process, unlike Penn State.
The imposed scholarship reduction penalties put in place following the Reggie Bush case are set to expire with the signing class of 2014 in February. The 2014 season also will be the final year of the 75-player roster limit imposed on USC.
Joe Schad and Johnny Curren of ESPN.com contributed to this report.