Murphy Is Latest Junior To Decide

Erik Murphy became the fifth Top 50 prospect from the Class of 2009 to commit since the start of the New Year. While his two finalists were slugging it out against league opponents Wednesday night, Murphy was busy delivering the bad news to programs that won't sign him next fall.

Power forwards and big men are on alert in the Class of 2009: commitments are popping.

Late Wednesday night, Southborough (Mass.) St. Mark's standout Erik Murphy ended his recruitment. Though he considered a host of programs from Marquette to Boston College and beyond, it came down to a pair of national powers.

"It was basically Florida and Duke in the end," Murphy told "I just like Coach Donovan a lot and I feel really comfortable there."

While Duke was toeing the line with Florida State and the 2-time defending champs were battling Ole Miss, Murphy was holed up at his house calling the staffs that won't sign him next fall.

The Gators wish list included Murphy and Greg Echenique so they could wrestle with the Blue Devils one more time this year.

Murphy is putting up 20 points and 10 rebounds a night. The 6-foot-9 power forward is ranked No. 41 by Murphy was out of the mix last summer, sidelined with a knee injury. "It was frustrating in the summer when I couldn't play. I tried to come back and I'm fine now."

The versatile Murphy was lured by the Gators style. "They use their big men in a versatile way," Murphy said. "I fit in their system really well."

A litany of top power forward prospects committed since the Christmas holiday. Clearly kids are intent on making sure their favorite program has room on its roster. Murphy is the 5th Top 50 prospect to fall in the two weeks.

"It definitely feels good to be able to focus on basketball."

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