Hercy Miller is transferring from the Tennessee State basketball program because of a lack of medical resources within the athletics department, but Master P is committed to levelling the playing field for Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Master P, who goes by the name "Percy Miller," said his son Hercy almost lost his playing career because of an improper diagnosis after he injured his hip in the first game of the season.
"We don't have enough trainers at Tennessee State, we've got a great program, we've got great people, we loved the culture, but we don't have enough trainers," Master P said. We don't have enough medical people to take care of the patients. We don't have the same technology as the Dukes and other universities. An injury like this could have been prevented.
Master P.'s son Hercy Miller will play basketball at Tennessee State.
Master P told The Tennessean on Tuesday that he does not blame the medical staff at TSU for the disparity in medical resources between major universities and HBCUs.
A legislative report by the Office of Legislative Budget Analysis estimated that TSU had been underfunded by $544 million over the years.
The sports medicine department at the school is staffed with seven fulltime employees and not understaffed, according to the athletics department officials.
The issue is not that we're not getting enough funding, according to the TSU director of sports medicine. It's not the same. The issue is that since Mikki Allen has been here we've been growing and that's what we're in the process of doing now.
Tennessee State freshman Hercy Miller has entered the transfer portal.
Hercy Miller had an injury.
Master P said that Hercy Miller was cleared to play in the next game four days after the injury. The freshman played in two games, against Norfolk State and Fisk.
There are three things to know about Hercy Miller.
Master P was concerned about Hercy's injury and sent her to a doctor who told her to take six months off. Hercy was ruled out for the season on November 30.
Master P took Hercy to be evaluated by a specialist.
The specialist said if we waited any longer he would not have been able to play basketball anymore because his knee would go out and other injuries would occur.
I said I have to bring awareness to what's going on at all these HBCUs. I'm going to be with all the HBCU programs to bring awareness to this, but I'm not going to sacrifice my son's career or future.
Master P said Hercy will return to his home on Monday and is open to returning to the Tigers if changes are made.
"If they got the right funding and resources and doctors and nutrition like the rest of the state-funded schools," Master P said. My family loved Nashville and he loved the coaches.
TSU is compared to other programs.
Allen has made improving the sports medicine staff a priority since he was hired. He said on Tuesday that he is satisfied with the progress that has been made.
The staff works closely with the team physician, who is also an orthodontist.
The TSU athletics medical staff is small compared to major college programs, but it is comparable to schools closer to its size.
Austin Peay has seven fulltime sports medicine staff members, including four fulltime athletics trainers, two interns and one graduate assistant. A team doctor attends all home games for Austin Peay.
Middle Tennessee State has 11 sports medicine staff members, six of which are certified athletic trainers.
Allen said that he is comfortable with where he is. "I always want to grow and there are always going to be times when you have to assess the organization at-large and say 'I need to make a change here from a personnel standpoint'." I feel good about that because it's all relative to the sports programs that we serve and the amount of kids in our program.
Allen is not discouraging Master P from helping HBCU programs.
"What it looks like in the HBCU space, Master P has been on other campuses and what it might not look like here so I can't speak on that," Allen said. I will tell you that we're the best in this space and that we're going to get better as we grow.
Hercy Miller's NIL deal won't be affected by transfer.
Hercy Miller signed a $2 million name, image, likeness sponsorship deal with Web Apps America.
He was a three-star prospect who said he has scholarship offers from a number of schools.
Master P said Hercy's NIL deal is still in place if he remains a college athlete.
Mike Organ can be reached on either the phone or on the internet.
The article was originally published on Nashville Tennessean.