The increased defensive attention hasn't rattled McDermott. "We've probably seen it all, from teams trying to double him, to trying to take somebody off one of our perimeter players to sit in his lap, to hitting him on the elbow and beating the crap out of him," says Creighton assistant Steve Merfeld. "None of that changes his facial expressions or who he is. Nobody has gotten in his head yet."
There was a chant from the Drake student section on Jan. 25 that briefly cracked his poise. As he stood at the free throw line to take the second of two shots with 3:53 left in a game that Creighton led by seven, the Drake students chanted, "You're a-dop-ted!"—one of the many family-themed taunts McDermott hears at every road game. He glanced into the stands behind the Creighton bench and caught the eye of Nick, who was doubled over laughing. With a smirk McDermott buried the foul shot. "I hear a lot of stuff," he says, "but playing for my dad has been fun, especially since we are both experiencing success at the same time. He treats me like any other player, which makes it a lot easier."
Likewise Doug, who changed Greg's cellphone ID from DAD to COACH MAC last season, treats his father as he would any coach. "If we have a rough practice and Coach Mac is getting after us, Doug will be the first to complain in the locker room," says sophomore guard Jahenns Manigat. McDermott's teammates don't give him grief about his bloodlines; instead they rib him about his growing celebrity. They call him and pretend to be reporters; they tell waiters to make sure he gets the All-American burger. "The truth is he is very humble and shy; he never talks about the national attention he's getting," says Manigat. "I have to gas him up sometimes."
Perhaps one reason McDermott resists basking in the unexpected spotlight is that being overlooked has been his biggest motivator. A mid-major was a good fit for him, he says, "because part of me just wanted to prove people wrong. I think I've done a good job of that." Naturally, it didn't take him much time at all.