James Berry got more than a few phone calls on Monday evening when his son's name went scrolling across the screen on ESPN.
It wasn't University of Tennessee All-American safety Eric Berry, but rather his 13-year-old brother, Evan, who became national news on Monday after Rivals.com reported he had committed to play football for the Vols.
Needless to say, James Berry, a former UT player, was a little surprised.
"I was taken aback," James Berry said Tuesday afternoon. "People were calling me asking me, 'What's this I hear about your son committing to Tennessee? It's on ESPN.' "
It wasn't planned that way. In fact, it wasn't planned at all, James Berry said.
Evan, who also has a twin brother, Elliott, spoke to a reporter at a recent track meet, James Berry said, and the topic turned to Tennessee.
"They found out he was Eric's brother," James Berry said. "They were asking them about Tennessee. The conversation turned to Evan, and he said he wanted to go to Tennessee."
According to his father, Evan answered a follow-up question by saying he was committed to Tennessee.
Evan and Elliott Berry have been frequent visitors to UT practices when in town to visit their older brother, although NCAA rules prohibit a school from offering a scholarship until a prospect is registered with the NCAA Eligibility Center.
That's still a long ways away. Both Evan and Elliott will start eighth grade in the fall, James Berry said, not ninth grade, as had been reported by Rivals.com.
Monday's attention might have been premature, but Evan and Elliott are already turning heads on the track.
Evan recently ran the 100 meters in 11.2 seconds, while Elliott took first place in the 200 at last year's AAU Junior Olympics in the sub-youth category. Both also play football.
"I'm excited about it and I'm proud of them because they're hard workers to excel in something they love," James Berry said. "The things that they're doing now, there's no doubt in my mind that more than likely they'll be able to attend a Division I school."
For Evan, the choice is Tennessee. But James Berry says it's up to each of his sons to make the decision.
"Wherever my kids end up at, that will be their decision," he said. "I would never pressure them into making that decision."
And as for Evan's more famous older brother, James Berry said he'd hadn't talked to Eric since Monday's news. But he's pretty sure the UT safety got a good laugh out of it.
"I'm pretty sure he heard about it," James Berry said. "He's probably rolling around with a big grin on his face."