Updated at the bottom with Russell Simmons weighing in.

Following our viral coverage of Justin Combs' full-ride scholarship to UCLA (despite his father Diddy's wealth, his own $300,000-plus car, and dire state education cuts and rising tuition costs), Justin Combs took to Twitter yesterday to defend his rich self.

He said:

Regardless what the circumstances are, I put that work in!!!!

The 18-year-old, who's getting a football scholarship that UCLA told us will not be covered by taxpayer funds, also tweeted:

Folks attacked us on Twitter for pointing out, as has the Daily Mail, CNN and the Los Angeles Times, that Combs' father is reportedly worth nearly a half-billion dollars.

Tuition and fees at UCLA have nearly tripled in the last 10 years, leaving the promise of a world-class education that working class Californians could afford in the dust.

Combs on his Maybach.; Credit: princejdc

Combs on his Maybach.; Credit: princejdc

Some students have taken to occupying UC Regents board meetings and participating in raucous, sometimes violent protests on state campuses throughout California.

UCLA, however, defended the scholarship in a statement first made to the Weekly:

… Athletic scholarships are awarded to students strictly on the basis of their athletic and academic ability, and not on a student's financial need. Athletic scholarships – such as those awarded to football or basketball players – do not rely on state funds. Instead, these scholarships are entirely funded by Athletic Department ticket sales, corporate partnerships, media contracts and private donations from supporters.

So there.

[Update at 4:18 p.m.]: Rap industry pioneer Russell Simmons weighed in on the controversy this afternoon via Twitter:

See also:

Diddy's Son Justin Combs Gets Full Scholarship to UCLA as Many Students Struggle.

[@dennisjromero / djromero@laweekly.com / @LAWeeklyNews]

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