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College basketball

Lil’ Romeo has heart set on Trojans

Lil’ Romeo said he’s bound for Southern California, where if all goes according to plan, he could be Romeo Miller, Trojans basketball player.

The teenage hip-hop star, a high school junior, has committed to play basketball for the Trojans, Dave Lindsay, a spokesman for Lil’ Romeo’s online label, UrbanDigital Records, said Friday.

USC spokesman Dave Tuttle declined to confirm or deny the report, but said the university hasn’t received a signed letter of intent from the rapper, who is just a high school junior.

“We can’t comment on any recruits or potential recruits until we have a signed letter,” Tuttle said.

Lil’ Romeo, whose full name is Percy Romeo Miller, is a guard on his Beverly Hills High School team. He is 17 years old and 6-foot-1.

“Basketball has run in the family,” Lindsay said, noting the rapper’s father, hip-hop mogul Master P, had tryouts with two NBA teams in the 1990s.

College football

Butkus not in a rewarding mood

Every December, the Downtown Athletic Club of Orlando (Fla.) gives the Butkus Award to college football’s top linebacker. So it would be natural to assume the club and the award’s namesake – Hall of Famer Dick Butkus – see eye-to-eye.

Not exactly.

Butkus is suing DACO, a not-for-profit organization, to gain control of the award plus the registered trademark “Butkus Award” and to raise money for causes he holds close to his heart. He actively lobbies against steroid abuse, particularly among prep athletes.

DACO, with rights assigned to them by Butkus over the phone in 1985 and again in an affidavit two years later, has given out the Butkus Award for 22 years. But in a complaint filed in federal district court in Los Angeles, Butkus said the club “concealed” from him that he never would be able to use his name in connection with a college linebacker award.

Horse racing

Another ‘Barbaro’ makes his debut

Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro has a second full brother.

Barbaro’s mother, La Ville Rouge, gave birth to the 148-pound bay colt at 2:08 a.m. Friday, according to Mill Ridge Farm in Lexington, Ky. The farm is also home to Barbaro’s other full brother, a yearling recently named Nicanor.

La Ville Rouge and Dynaformer, a stallion who fetches a $150,000 stud fee at nearby Three Chimneys Farm, were scheduled to mate again later this spring, Mill Ridge director of sales Bayne Welker said in February.

Barbaro was euthanized Jan. 29 after complications from his gruesome breakdown at last May’s Preakness.


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