Who Is Lauren Isackson? New Details About The Soccer 'Star' Involved In The Operation Varsity Blues Scandal

Photo: UCLA 
Who Is Lauren Isackson? New Details About The Soccer 'Star' Involved In The Operation Varsity Blues Scandal

She's on UCLA's star soccer team, but she hasn't played a game.

Getting in college is no mean feat. There's a reason prestigious schools are considered to be so darn prestigious: its accepted applicants are the best of the best, the cream of the crop, students with a diverse set of skills, interests, and abilities... unless they got into school some other way. That's exactly what happened when more than 50 students' parents are alleged to have paid mastermind William Singer top dollar to make sure their kids got into the nation's best schools... even if that meant lying about their achievements, or lack thereof. 

When stories about the scandal first broke, celebrities like Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were among the first to be implicated. However, now that the case is breaking wide open, more and more people involved in this fraudulent scheme are being revealed. Meet Lauren Isackson and her devoted parents. They were so devoted, in fact, that they were willing to spend a quarter of a million dollars and lie through their teeth to get their daughter into school. 

So who is Lauren Isackson? Here's everything we know about the "soccer star" who never played soccer.

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1. Playing for UCLA 

Lauren Isackson and her parents, Davina and Bruce Isackson, were recently named in the indictments sweeping the nation in light of the college admissions scam orchestrated by William "Rick" Singer. Wealthy celebrities and other powerful rich people like Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin have made headlines for charges that they knowingly participated in Singer's illegal scheme to get the children of the wealthy, deserving or otherwise, into the country's top colleges and universities. 

Lauren made UCLA's soccer team, which is no small feat. The team is made up of elite players from all over the world, including a member of the Canadian national team (Kennedy Faulknor) and FIVE members of the US national youth team. It's worth pointing out the caliber of the "average" UCLA soccer player because Lauren... has almost no soccer experience to speak of! Sure, she was the captain of the Woodside soccer club, but when your teammates have all played on the national level, club participation just doesn't cut it. 

The federal government alleges that the athletic admissions committee required that Lauren, who enrolled at UCLA in 2016, play for at least one full year for the soccer team. While Lauren is listed as jersey number 41 on the team's website and plays as a midfielder, she has no other information listed as she played in no games. Her profile also mentioned she has an honorable mention all-league selection for the West Bay Athletic League in California in 2014, which the prosecutors also believe is totally false. 

2. What Her Mother Did 

So how did Lauren, a young woman with limited soccer experience get into the highly competitive UCLA on a soccer-based scholarship? Her parents are believed to have paid for the privilege. Isackson's parents are said to have given William Singer 2,150 Facebook shares, valued at a whopping $250,000 to make sure their daughter got in. Of course, the fact that they made the shares under the guise of a donation to his charity, the Key Worldwide Foundation, doesn't look great either. 

Further implicating the Isackson family are tapes from when the feds taped William Singer's phone. On those phone calls, Bruce Isackson can be heard discussing just how embarrassing it would be to the family if the truth about their "donations" to get their daughter into school ever got out, which is pretty damning. Currently, Davina Isackson has been released on a $1million dollar bond. Her release was contingent upon her agreement to give up her passport. Her husband Bruce is set to appear in court next week. 

The day Lauren got her "acceptance" to the school, Davina thanked Singer in an email that read: “I know it has been a rough ride,” she wrote, according to the affidavit, “but I thank you from the bottom of my heart and soul for your persistence, creativity and commitment towards helping [our daughter].”

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3. Singer Strikes Again 

So how exactly did Singer do it once he knew he was going to be paid handsomely? With some difficulty. The Isackson's first choice for Lauren was USC, but because of a “clerical error,” Isackson’s fake athletic profile was dumped in the "normal" admissions pile in February 2017, something Singer wasn't counting on, at least, according to an FBI affidavit.

Realizing he had to act fast, Singer then sent the fake athletic profile to Ali Khosroshahin, a former USC women’s soccer coach, who passed it to the school's men's soccer team, prosecutors say. It's not just the parents who got caught, Khosroshahin, in no short order, has also been charged with conspiracy to commit racketeering.

4. The Other Isacksons 

To be fair, Lauren isn't the only child who the Isackson's are alleged to have been willing to spend top dollar upon if it meant getting them into the school of their (parents') dreams. The Isacksons did pretty much the same thing to get their other daughter, an equestrian, into school, by falsing admitting her as a rowing recruit. They are believed to have donated another giant sum of $101,272 to Singer's foundation to make sure it got done.

Believe it or not, just as the charges came down the couple was also in the process of trying to do the same for their third child, their youngest son. That didn't come to fruition because Singer's scheme had finally come tumbling down around his ears. 

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Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cats, Batman and Margot. Her work focuses on relationships, pop culture and news. For more of her work, check out her Tumblr