Every Sunday after church, from the age of seven to 14, the two of them would go to the park and toss the football around. She was the quarterback of her Powder Puff tackle football team back in high school, and would throw routes to her son.
"Every time I dropped the ball, she would throw it harder," Devon Flournoy said with a laugh. "That's where I think I got all my football talent from. When I drop a ball now, it really hits close to home because it's like a punishment to drop one."
He doesn't drop many anymore.
Heading into Friday's Los Angeles city title game against Carson (11-2), the 6-foot-2, 180-pound Flournoy has caught 35 passes for 758 yards and 14 touchdowns. That's a lot of production considering Birmingham (13-1) teammate Milton Knox, a four-star 2008 recruit, has rushed for 2,031 yards and 36 touchdowns.
Another thing Flournoy has caught, is his first scholarship offer. Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis gave it to him over the phone on Monday.
"The dean told me on Friday, I want you to come to my office on Monday," Flournoy began. He has also run back a punt and a kickoff for a score this fall. "I said okay, and he was like I want you to talk to Notre Dame.
"So I go to his office on Monday and I thought it was going to be the same old we like you and we're very interested," he continued. "So I'm talking to (coach Brian Polian), then a minute later he is like someone wants to talk to you and they put (head) coach (Charlie) Weis on the phone. He sounded really at home, comfortable talking to me. Everything flowed and felt natural talking to him. He asked if I was interested and I said very interested and that's when he gave me the offer.
"He was telling me he has a lot of receivers that are big and kind of the same receiver, and he wanted one that stood out, that was fast, and he said I'm the one. He said I have speed which helps. That's something they would like to have at Notre Dame. When I got off the phone with him, he said get your butt to class. It was really funny because normally coaches only talk about what you can do on the field."
Flournoy got a chance to watch the Irish when they beat UCLA at the Rose Bowl, Oct. 6.
"I see they do something I really like, they pass a lot," Flournoy said. "They were on the goal line and they passed it. Plus I know of Jimmy Clausen because of high school football."
With Notre Dame being the first program to offer a scholarship, the Irish will always hold a special place in Flournoy's heart. But he also "really likes" USC.
"I've met Pete Carroll and coach (Steve) Sarkisian," Flournoy said. "They're really positive. When I went up there for the skill camp they were moving things fast and always yelling things like lets get pumped. In the registration line, Sarkisian came up to me and said hey Flournoy how are you? People were like he is talking to coach Sarkisian. He was like I'm going to tell Pete you're here and coach Carroll came over and asked me if I'm ready to show what I got?"
Flournoy was, clocking a 4.47 in the 40-yard dash.
Flournoy also reported that he has a 3.1 GPA, can bench press 205 pounds, and that his squat has gone up from 310 pounds to 430 since his freshman year.
"I have really strong legs."
Flournoy also said he likes Oregon and UCLA. As the offers start to roll in, the more schools he will favor.
The first week of January, Flournoy is going to try and make it to the U.S. Army National Combine in San Antonio, Texas, which showcases the nation's top juniors. He has only been on USC and UCLA's campuses, so this summer, he hopes to do plenty of traveling to check out schools. Notre Dame will definitely be a possible destination.