Catching up with Thunder fan George Overbey
Here’s a look back at the story following last fall’s flag football game in which Kevin Durant took Thunder fan George Overbey up on offer to play in Stillwater.
And then we catch up with Overbey :
Big men on campus
THE LOCKOUT LIFE
RANDOM MESSAGE ON TWITTER BROUGHT TOGETHER THUNDER STAR AND OSU STUDENT
By Darnell Mayberry
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
Edition: CITY, Section: SPORTS, Page 1C
George Overbey just knew he was going to bomb his accounting quiz Tuesday morning.
After the night he had, how could he not?
The 21-year-oldOklahomaStatesenior had stayed up till 4 a.m. None of those hours were spent cramming. And by the time he plopped down in his 9 a.m. class, Overbey’s mind was a magnificent mess, stuck somewhere between sleep deprived and still daydreaming about the one-of-a-kind encounter he’d forever cherish.
Then the professor displayed the first question on the overhead projector.
“What NBA player was here inStillwaterlast night playing flag football?”
This one was easy. By now, it seemed the whole campus knew the answer.
The next question appeared.
“What accounting master’s student brought Kevin Durant toStillwater?”
Overbey looked up and saw his name as one of the multiple choice options. Suddenly, he realized this quiz was tailor-made. It wouldn’t be the one he’d have to drop from his accounting grade.
That’s how life went for Overbey on Tuesday. He was the big man on campus, the man hailed for bringing an NBA superstar to town for one impromptu intramural game of flag football on Monday night.
“I don’t know about that,” Overbey said. “I’m definitely the lucky man on campus. I was just lucky to get re-tweeted by Kevin Durant and get to experience his humility and generosity.”
In any other calendar year, Durant wouldn’t have been available. But because of the four-month-old NBA lockout, the Oklahoma City Thunder star was looking for fun on Halloween night rather than resting up for his team’s scratched season opener.
It all started when Durant posted a random message to his Twitter account early Monday evening.
“This lockout is really boring..anybody playing flag football in Okc..I need to run around or something!” Durant wrote.
Overbey responded, “Got a game tonight inStillwater!! I need a deep threat!!”
Durant asked, “Can I play?”
Overbey then replied, “Can you catch? We’ve won the ‘ship for 3 years! Tonight @ 10.” To that, Durant fired back, “forreal?”
Yes, Overbey was for real.
The two continued their conversation via Twitter’s private, “direct message” function, exchanging cell phone numbers and other details. Overbey, who was The Oklahoman’s 2008 Scholar Athlete of the Year, played high school basketball with Blake Griffin atOklahomaChristianSchool. Overbey made sure to notify Durant to his ties toGriffinso the Thunder forward knew he wasn’t crazy.
Unfazed, Durant responded with “lol,” the acronym for laughing out loud, and reiterated that he just wanted to play.
Durant, though, had one request. He asked if he could play quarterback. That generally is Overbey’s position. But do you really think Overbey, who calls Durant his favorite player, was going to tell the two-time scoring champ no?
“I was like, ‘Dude, you can play whatever position you want,’” said Overbey, who gladly moved to receiver.
So Overbey shipped Durant his address. Durant and two friends leftOklahoma Cityjust before 9 p.m. Overbey provided frequent directions as Durant made his way toStillwater.
“As he was getting closer, it was kind of sinking in,” Overbey said. “When he told me he was exiting on Highway 51 I was like, ‘Wow, he’s only 15 minutes away.’”
Through a friend and teammate who works at a printing company, Overbey had a team T-shirt printed for Durant. It had the team’s name, “Sigma Nu” on the front and Durant’s customary No. 35 etched on the back with his initials, “KD,” emblazoned above it.
Running late, Overbey and a friend hopped in Durant’s black conversion van and jetted to the field.
On the way, the gang first blasted the tricked-out vehicle’s stereo system. Then, Durant talked aboutOklahomaState’s upcoming game againstKansasStateand asked when Bedlam is. Later, Durant inquired about when Sigma Nu’s next intramural game was. Durant already was looking to set up his next appearance. Overbey told Durant the championship game had been played at Boone Pickens Stadium the past three years, and added Sigma Nu has won the title each of the past three years. Durant said he would return when he got his cleats — a football version of his signature KD IVs.
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