USC water polo coach arrested in Waikiki in connection with college bribery scheme


One of the more than dozen people named in the college bribery case was arrested in Waikiki.

Jovan Vavic was the USC men’s and women’s water polo head coach.

Vavic was on Oahu for a scheduled match between the USC women’s water polo team and UH Manoa that was set to happen Saturday, March 16. 

Vavic was arrested by the FBI Tuedsay morning in Waikiki in connection with the Ivy League admissions scheme.

He is accused of conspiracy to commit racketeering and and racketeering forfeiture allegations.

The indictment claims that Vavic accepted more than $250,000 in exchange for designating two students as water polo players, which allowed their admission to USC.

The indictment also says Vavic accepted money from William Singer, who owns a college admissions prep service.

It claims Singer paid for private school tuition for two of Vavic’s kids in exchange for his designating students as water polo players in the future. 

USC released a statement saying it “is conducting an internal investigation. Donna Heinel — the school’s associate athletic director– and Jovan Vavic have been terminated and the university will take additional employment actions as appropriate.” The school says it is also “in the process of identifying any funds received by the university in connection with this alleged scheme.”

Vavic is one of the most decorated and top coaches in the country according to his USC profile. 

Vavic was released on $50,000 bond. He is scheduled to appear in court in Massachusetts on March 25 at 2:30 p.m.

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