Mur­ray fight­ing ill­ness, will play in bowl

The Tribune (SLO) - - Sports - BY TIM REYNOLDS

MI­AMI GAR­DENS, FLA. Kyler Mur­ray knows his fu­ture plans. Lots of rest, lots of flu­ids and a foot­ball game on Satur­day.

From there, it’s still a mys­tery. Ok­la­homa’s quar­ter­back and the reign­ing Heis­man Tro­phy win­ner still was deal­ing with a cough and some snif­fles Thurs­day, two days be­fore the fourthranked Soon­ers will face topranked Alabama in the Col­lege Foot­ball Play­off semi­fi­nals at the Or­ange Bowl. He in­sists that’s his lone fo­cus right now, de­spite the on­go­ing fas­ci­na­tion about whether he’ll play foot­ball, base­ball or both pro­fes­sion­ally.

“It’s never bad to have op­tions,” Mur­ray said.

Mur­ray was drafted in the first round this year by the Oak­land A’s, who paid the out­fielder a sign­ing bonus of about $4.7 mil­lion. That was six months be­fore he be­came a Heis­man Tro­phy-win­ning quar­ter­back, one who has guided the Soon­ers to a 12-1 record and into the four-team CFP field.

Now he’s be­ing men­tioned as an NFL Draft can­di­date.

And yes, he did ex­pect such a sce­nario.

“I al­ways felt like it might be, hon­estly,” Mur­ray said. “It’s like no­body ex­pected any of this but me, the peo­ple that are clos­est to me, peo­ple that I’ve al­ways known, who have al­ways watched me play whether it was foot­ball, base­ball. No­body ex­pected this. So now it’s kind of like, ‘What do you do?’ But for me, I’m just tak­ing it one day at a time and do­ing what I’ve al­ways done.”

He missed a me­dia ses­sion Wed­nes­day be­cause he was feel­ing ill, and Mur­ray clearly wasn’t 100 per­cent Thurs­day – but in­sisted he will play in the Or­ange Bowl.

In a year filled with Mur­ray high­lights, the quar­ter­back couldn’t pick his fa­vorite. He’s hop­ing it’s yet to come. “There’s a lot of high­lights. It’s been a fun year,” Mur­ray said. “But for me, I’m not a sat­is­fied guy, so for me, the high­light would be win­ning a na­tional cham­pi­onship.”

Kyler Mur­ray

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