Speed Demon - Deon Murphy

Deon Murphy is fast, blazing fast and is quickly becoming a major Weapon for the Wildcat Offense. Coach Prince discusses his role in the offense. Antwon Moore Injury update..... and A NEW STARTER in the WR rotation emerges..... Read On


Deon Murphy is quickly becoming Kansas State's Yamon Figurs of 2007. Versatile: The Coffeyville College transfer already has earned a starting spot at wide receiver and punt returner.

Productive: In just eight quarters, Murphy has caught 11 passes for 111 yards with one touchdown, has rushed for a 21-yard score, and has five punt returns with one of those covering 56 yards.

Fast: "Fast." How fast? "My best is 4.28, but I'm consistently 4.35."

Hands: "Great, sir. I think my hands are great."

Coach Ron Prince doesn't disagree with any of Murphy's self-assessments.

"Deon is a very confident kid. After last year we said we had to go find a wide receiver who could really make an impact on the game like Yamon did," Prince said.

And now with Murphy proving to be a prime time player, Prince said. "This offense has to have what Deon provides. If you don't have that type of person it makes it very challenging, and you're just trying to move the sticks for first downs instead of trying to get points and build momentum in the game."

In last week's 34-14 win over San Jose State, Murphy caught six passes for 72 yards, ran an end-around for a 21-yard score, and set up a field goal with a 56-yard punt return.

A week earlier at Auburn, Murphy played with comfort and ease in his first K-State game viewed by 87,000-plus fans, or about 86,000 more than attended his junior college games.

Overall, Murphy said of his first two outings, "It feels great, but I'm real humble. I feel like I can do this all the time."

What Murphy has been is a great complement to Jordy Nelson giving K-State potentially its best 1-2 receiving punch since Aaron Lockett and Quincy Morgan in 2000.

Going into the season Murphy predicted, "I think I can make a strong impact right away. I'm talking the first game."

While it's just two games, the Houston, Texas, native is doing just that.

For the record, Figurs caught 28 passes for 418 yards, rushed three times for 71 yards averaged 14.7 yards on 22 punt returns and 22.6 yards on nine kickoff returns. He was the third-round draft choice of the Baltimore Ravens. MOORE OUT FOR YEAR

Antwon Moore's final play to his 2007 season was a dandy sack of the San Jose State quarterback. But it was on the play that he suffered ligament damage to his left knee that will require surgery and sideline the 5-foot-10, 210-pound junior outside linebacker for the rest of the season.

"Antwon's brought a lot of energy to us," Prince said of the 2006 transfer from Northeast Oklahoma A&M. "He had a big role in the kicking game a year ago and a big role defensively. Against a lot of teams with a mobile quarterback, Antwon was able to help us with a different style a year ago. This year we expanded his role and can see he plays with a certain speed, so we'll miss him, without question."

Moore was playing behind Eric Childs on the weak side, while the strong side outside linebackers have been Ian Campbell and Chris Patterson.

While declining to name names, Prince said on who might fill Moore's role: "When one door closes another opens up so there is an opportunity for someone else to show what they can do and we'll be looking towards that this week." PIERCE MOVES TO NO. 1

This week's depth chart shows that Ernie Pierce, a 6-4, 209-pound transfer from Santa Barbara Community College, has moved ahead of Daniel Gonzalez as KSU's third starting wide receiver.

Pierce has yet to catch a pass this season, but apparently earned the advancement through his special teams play.

"Around here special teams is important and there's a standard that we're going to play to and a lot of things that affect the offensive and defensive depth chart stem from the kicking game, so we want to make sure that we're improving in that area," the Wildcat coach said.

"There are some areas that I'm pleased with and some that I am not, so I want to get all of our best players on the field all the time and they're ready to go."

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