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LSU alum Spears hails Pistol Pete

SEC Storied: “Maravich” premieres tonight, profiles Tiger legend

“Pistol” Pete Maravich was one of the most prolific players and prominent personalities in basketball history. ESPN Films delves into the Naismith Basketball Hall Of Famer’s legacy when SEC Storied: “Maravich” premieres tonight at 9 ET on SEC Network ahead of its ESPN debut on April 3.

SEC Network football analyst Marcus Spears appreciates Maravich, who averaged an incredible 44.2 points per game at LSU from 1967-70 and later became a five-time NBA All-Star guard. Even decades after Maravich’s SEC stardom, Baton Rouge native and star LSU defensive end Spears regularly paid tribute to the innovative legend.

Marcus Spears poses on the set of SEC Nation. (Travis Bell/ESPN Images

“I’m a Louisiana boy, and if you grow up in Louisiana, you hear the tales of ‘Pistol’ Pete Maravich,” Spears said. “If you ever walked around the streets of Louisiana twirling a basketball on your finger, if you ever tried a trick shot, if you ever shot too much during a game, you weren’t trying to be Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant or LeBron James, you were trying to be The Pistol. I’m so glad to see the Pistol getting his due. I’ve seen Shaq [Shaquille O’Neal] and Chris Jackson, two of the greatest players to ever suit up for the LSU Tigers, but the Pistol reigned supreme.”

Maravich’s son, Josh, was a classmate of Spears at LSU.

“[Josh] was in college with me and he could hoop, too,” Spears said. “[Josh] had so much pressure on him. I can’t imagine playing, let alone living, with that weight. Pistol Pete changed the game before you even realized he changed the game. What you see now in the NBA today, he was doing that 50 years ago.”

Maravich, who was tutored by his father and former LSU head coach Press Maravich, died in 1988. Catch a glimpse of The Pistol’s greatness in the exclusive Front Row clip of “Maravich” above and tune in tonight for the full story.