"He's always been a great player."

Kerry Murphy, defensive tackle from Hoover, Ala. to Hargrave Military Academy (2007-2008) in Chatham, Va., back home for a semester, is the journey Murphy has traveled to make it to the University of Alabama.

Former Hoover assistant coach, Chris Davis who is now at Pelham, talked about Murphy's focus and the long road to become a student in Tuscaloosa.

"I still keep in contact with him," coach Davis said.

"It seems like he's been out of a program and been on the outside looking in at what he could have been from day-one. "I think that's really affected him."

"It's time for him to buckle down and get things right. He's always been a great player, but spending a year at Hargrave, and that being an up-and-down experience for him. Then leaving there, and realizing he wasn't going to qualify again."

"Now knowing that this was his last shot at qualifying, more or less, made him grow up a little bit and become a little bit more mature and realize the mistakes he has made in the past on his grades is something he's got to own up to. He's got to get those corrected to get a chance to play at a D-1 school like Alabama."

"Of course Alabama going 12-0 and winning the West this year, and six of our kids from Hoover being there and him watching them and being around them, I'm pretty sure that got to him as well to where he decided 'hey I've got to get this done.' It's been a lifelong dream for him to play at Alabama."

"Absolutely," Davis said as seeing the maturity in Murphy. "He's definitely grown up. He's decided this is what I want to do, and this is what I've got to do to get there."

"I think they [Alabama] laid it down to him. I'm not sure what they told him, but they let him know what he had to do, and he's been doing it. They've got him in school this time, and he knows that this is a one shot deal. He can't keep playing around, and if he wants to play at the University of Alabama he's got to get it done."

Davis was asked about Murphy's versatility of offensive/defensive and any idea what he can do now at this level.

"I don't know what their plans are for him," he stated. "I know if he keeps his weight up he will probably be an offensive linemen, if he loses some of it they may play defensive line it's according to what needs they have."

"He's versatile enough to play both, it doesn't matter. He will be a great player, it doesn't matter. He'll be a great player. He's so athletic. He's got huge upside."

BamaMag Top Stories