USC benches baseball head coach

USC has suspended head baseball coach Frank Cruz pending an internal investigation into whether his program violated NCAA bylaws by spending excessive time working with players, the university announced Thursday.

Assistant head coach Dan Hubbs will lead the team as interim head coach, as the Trojans head into their alumni game on Sunday at Dedeaux Field. Cruz was entering his third season with the Trojans.

NCAA rules limit the number of hours players can spend participating in activities supervised by coaches. The investigation will probe whether excessive countable athletically-related activities occurred during Cruz’s watch.

“We take any potential NCAA infraction seriously,” Athletic Director Pat Haden said in a statement. “USC Vice President for Athletic Compliance Dave Roberts and his staff will investigate whether the baseball program exceeded the allowable CARA hours, and will do so diligently and expeditiously. Pending the results of the investigation, we have suspended Coach Cruz from all coaching duties.”

After Sunday, the Trojans will take on Cal State Fullerton on the road.