2009's Murray Writing Next Chapter

There are good stories and then there are potentially great ones. Aaric Murray's attendance record at school wasn't anything to be proud of. However, he recently completed his junior year at Glen Mills with a new perspective.

Aaric Murray, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer, once skipped 150 straight days of school. Basketball, not to mention life, wasn't looking great at that point.

Someway, somehow, Murray has his ship sailing in the right direction these days. Fueled by the sport he's been playing less than two full seasons, the 6-foot-9, 220 pound Concordville (Penn.) Glen Mills center, has a completely new outlook on life.

Glen Mills head coach Craig Mellinger couldn't be more encouraged. Mellinger's seen a lot of good players and unique situations. The long time coach at the school for wayward youth, sees potential and promise in his standout.

"The growth and maturity – social interaction skills – have been noticeable in the last year," Mellinger said. "He's had people talk to him and point him in the right direction it's been great. He's thinking more about his future than he ever did."

From a recruiting standpoint, if Murray continues to stay on the path, things will be great. All the Big 5 head coaches have seen him and others are right there. "West Virginia was the first to step to the plate and stay consistent," Mellinger said. "Rutgers and Pittsburgh, not in any special order. West Virginia may have nipped Rutgers by a day."

Temple, St. Joseph's, LaSalle and national level programs are keeping tabs. Recent calls from Kentucky, Arizona and Marquette have been answered. "I don't want to leave anyone out and I'm sure it'll continue to grow."

And why wouldn't it? Murray is staying the course and finished the season averaging 19 points and 11 rebounds.

Academically, Murray is playing catch up and already owns a qualifying ACT score. Glen Mills is a year-round institution and despite an academic background that "hop scotched all over the place," Murray is now enrolled in the right courses and performing. He is definitely on target to graduate with his 2009 class.

"His raw potential and upside is impressive," Mellinger said. "Being here as long as I have, I'd had an opportunity to see some outstanding athletes. As this young man's work ethic grows, I don't know what his limit is.

"At 6-foot-9, he's agile. At the high school level he can do whatever he wants to do on the basketball court when he pushes himself. He did these numbers and still had a little doubt in his mind about what he could do."

A loss to Norristown ended Glen Mills' season last week. With his junior year on the books, it's time for the next chapter.

"Let's hope that all the chapters get written here. He's done a lot of good things since he's been here and we trust he's going to continue to do those things here."

Murray has the tools and potential to be a Top 100 prospect. Should he keep his life in order we expect him to be a lock high-major prospect. Our only look came at the Eddie Griffin Challenge.

Demonstrating natural scoring tools, a big presence inside, he pinged our radar. The raw materials are there to be a strong post scorer and full-time rebounder.

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