It is always great to have friends that have you back and care for your well-being too. I’m sure most of you have someone like that in your life. But did your friend ever get you a full-ride athletic scholarship at a prestigious university? Well, if you were best friends with DeMar DeRozan, you could have had a shot.
DeMar DeRozan is one of the better shooting guards in the NBA and a pretty well-known star in the basketball world. But before he became a household name in the league, Demar was a high school phenom in the state of California. In 2008, DeMar was ranked the fifth-best player in the country and a lock to be a one-and-done NBA prospect. At that same time, DeMar had a close friendship with Romeo Miller, better known as rapper “Lil Romeo” and son of Percy Miller, the famous “Master P.”
The two didn’t play in the same high school but were AAU teammates from an early age, with Romeo’s father, Master P, coaching them. Playing together, DeMar and Romeo were a dangerous duo, nicknamed “The Transformers.”
DeRozan was heavily recruited in his junior year by basically all the programs in the country, while Romeo was falling off a bit and looking near the end of his basketball career days. Luckily for Romeo, his friendship with DeMar would save him. Demar got so used to playing and being around Romeo that he couldn’t just leave him behind.
While negotiating with the top colleges, Demar was represented by Master P, who, alongside being a rapper, had a sports agency. He presented USC with a clever deal, giving them DeMar DeRozan under the condition they give his son Romeo Miller a full-ride scholarship. Romeo was a good player, but nowhere near DeMar’s level or D1 for that matter.
USC had no doubts about their decision, accepting the offer at all costs just to get DeRozan on their team. That’s how good DeMar was at that time. Considering how hard it is to get a full-ride scholarship at a top college, it is crazy to think DeRozan managed to earn one for himself and one for his friend.
Romeo wasn’t good enough to play at USC, but that didn’t mean he was a terrible player. He had a few great high school seasons and had game, just not enough to be on that level. As we all known, DeMar went on to the NBA after one year and built an impressive NBA career, while Romeo stayed with the Trojans for two years.
In those two years, Romeo played 19 minutes and scored 5 points total. He didn’t appreciate the treatment and quit the team after his second season, just proving he was there for the ride-along. At least USC got DeRozan there for one year, while Miller managed to get two years of D1 experience, so it was sort of a win-win situation for both sides. We all could use a friend like DeMar DeRozan.