In a decision sure to disappoint opposing hecklers far more than USC basketball fans, Percy Miller is packing up his trademark aviator shades and oversized jewelry and leaving the Trojans program.
Miller, best known as rapper Lil' Romeo, will not return for his junior season, according to the Los Angeles Daily News. The 5-foot-11 point guard logged a mere 19 minutes in two years at USC, appearing in just three games last season in part due to a sprained left shoulder.
That Miller was even recruited to USC at all is one of the more bizarre decisions of former coach Tim Floyd's scandal-tainted tenure at the school.
Most believe Miller received a scholarship offer to USC only because his relationship with childhood friend DeMar Derozan helped the Trojans land the future NBA lottery pick. Floyd has always refuted this, but why else would he have recruited an injury-prone 160-pound guard who averaged 8.6 points a game as a senior for Beverly Hills High School.
"It's very rare to give a scholarship to someone who may never play," All-Star Sports recruiting director Bob Gibbons told the Wall Street Journal at the time.
If you want to add a little humor to your Friday workday, take a look at how Floyd described Percy Miller in a press release when the rapper turned point guard signed with the Trojans 2 1/2 years ago.
"He is a very unselfish point guard who plays exceptionally hard," Floyd said. "You can't have enough guys on your team who you think are reliable and dependable and have a tremendous upside. He is going to be playing on one of the better high schools in the area and it is always been important to us to have point guards coming in that know how to win."
That "tremendous upside," as Floyd so amusingly put it, not surprisingly didn't translate into tremendous production on the court.
Let's wish Miller further success, whether at another college or in the entertainment industry. And let's hope USC can find a way to put his scholarship to better use in the future.