Maybe it started a few years back, or maybe it started Jan. 26, 2010. Maybe it started with 30 points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals from the 5-foot-9 pride of Chester, South Carolina.
But it ends with a shoutout to Devan Downey.
Gary Parrish is one of the most plugged-in college basketball reporters working today. He was once the Memphis basketball beat writer, covering John Calipari day in and day out. Now he works for CBS, writing, going on television, breaking news and generally doing the full range of things a modern multimedia journalist does.
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But a few years ago, on the Eye on College Basketball podcast he does with fellow CBS writer Matt Norlander, Parrish could not recall the name of the diminutive guard who willed the Gamecocks past No. 1 Kentucky, handing Calipari, John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins their first loss in Wildcat blue.
When they remembered the name, Parrish gave a shoutout to Devan Downey.
And it stuck.
In one of those quirks that make podcasts what they are, it just stuck. Nearly without fail, each episode includes a shoutout to Downey and a shoutout to his hometown of Chester (also a shoutout Baylor’s all-time second-leading scorer, Terry Teagle).
As Tuesday’s South Carolina-Kentucky game approached, the subject naturally came up on an episode of the podcast. Both Parrish and Norlander picked the Gamecocks, perhaps more out of sentiment than anything else. Then Parrish promised a shoutout to Downey on national TV if the Gamecocks pulled it off.
And he delivered.