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One Shining Moment creator talks about song on what should be final night tourney

Song written in 1986 by composer from Michigan.

DETROIT – It’s something fans wait for, the One Shining Moment montage, at the end of March Madness.

The song was written in 1986 by a composer from Hazlett, Michigan. He was inspired by Larry Bird at the height of his career.

“I thought, this is worth writing about,” said David Barrett, a basketball fan and former player. “So, I wrote down the song title on a napkin.”

Barrett paired the lyrics to music and recorded it. That’s when Barrett’s friend, Armen Keteyian of Sports Illustrated, took the cassette to CBS Sports.

The network liked it a lot and put together the first montage when Indiana beat Syracuse in 1987.

“I had no idea what they were going to do with it,” Barrett said. “[When I saw it,] I thought, they got it. They completely got it.”

Ever since that first year, the song has been used after the tournament to tell the story of hard work, passion, victory and defeat.

“It’s a song about time,” Barrett said. “Not all moments are equal and when you work really hard and there is that moment. Basketball is a metaphor for so many things in life.”

This year, there was no tournament, but that didn’t mean no One Shining Moment. Schools started contacting Barrett.

“Yesterday I spoke to Penn State, they reached out,” Barrett said. “They asked, ‘is it OK to use it, we made the tournament for the first time and our moment was stolen.’ I, of course, agreed.”

Penn State was not the only school. One internet search and you can find multiple renditions. Schools using their regular season highlights to those same familiar lyrics. Moments that made us all smile.

Barrett owns the song he wrote on a napkin all those years ago. CBS has an exclusive license. Barrett said both agreed to let the schools use the song this year because ‘we’re all in this together.’