Recruiting: Murray breaks down OU, USC

Oklahoma wants DeMarco Murray as a running back. USC wants him as a defensive back. The only question now is where does Murray want to play? The five-star running back discussed those issues and more with on Wednesday.

DeMarco Murray, RB, 6-1, 185, LAS VEGAS (BISHOP GORMAN HS), NEVADA:

JH: How is it going with you with your decision just three weeks away?

DM: "Things are going pretty good, but things are starting to get a little more hectic. Things are going great at school, but I am just taking a little time to make a good decision for me that will affect the next four years of my life."

JH: So life does get more hectic for you as you get close to your decision?

DM: "It remains pretty hectic. I am just trying to take life one day at a time. Life is pretty good, but my decision is hard. I am going to make the best decision for myself and continue to listen to the coaches and see where I can fit in the best."

JH: You invited OU Head Football Coach Bob Stoops and former OU quarterback and current running back coach Cale Gundy to your teams' football banquet recently. How did that come about?

DM: "It was a great thing for them to come out and support me, and come out and hang out with me at my banquet. It was like... 'Wow'. Coach Stoops was here and people were excited about it. It was a great thing for me for them to come out. I was able to sit down with them, eat with them and talk to them a little bit. What went down there was kind of a recruiting thing, but I had a great time and I appreciate them coming down. I had a great time."

JH: With all the prestige at Bishop Gorman High, I bet you guys do a pretty nice banquet?

DM: "Yeah, I think we put on a pretty good football banquet. We are a private Catholic school and it was great. Coach Stoops kept telling me how the banquet felt like his because he went to a Catholic private school back then. It is like a family-oriented banquet, and I had a great time with those guys.

JH: You could have invited any coach to your banquet, but you invited Stoops and Gundy. Talk about the relationship you have with Coach Stoops and Coach Gundy?

DM: "I just feel a lot more comfortable with them, because I have known them for a longer time than any other coaches. I have known them since my sophomore year, so I just wanted to get them to my banquet. I just wanted them to feel the positive attitude that we have at our school and to feel the positive attitude of all the people at my school. It was a great thing that they came down here, and I felt very comfortable with them being down here at my banquet. I had a great time."

JH: From what I understand, you had your regular recruiting meeting with Coach Stoops and Coach Gundy after the banquet, and then following that meeting didn't you meet with Coach (Pete) Carroll from USC?

DM: "After the banquet my father, Coach (Dave) White and I sat down with Cale Gundy and Coach Stoops for about 45 minutes to an hour to talk about stuff. We were just talking about decision-making stuff and what goes into it. We had a great meeting right there. Then later I met with Coach Carroll at Laundry's across the street from our banquet. It was Coach Carroll, me, my father, Coach White and Coach Burns. So, that went pretty well and I didn't get home until 11 something. I just had a great time with the coaches and I got an opportunity to feel them out a little bit more."

JH: Is there a great deal of difference between Bob Stoops and Pete Carroll?

DM: "I think they are very different. Coach Stoops is a little quieter and likes to talk about real issues, while Coach Carroll likes to talk about what the team does and how they expect to win. He talks about how they know they are going to win and that they want to win. Coach Stoops doesn't get into much stuff about the team unless I ask. He is a down-to-earth kind of guy and a quiet guy, but he can get you hyped and get you going when he needs to. They are different guys, but they are both want to win and they both want me at their school."

JH: Both schools are recruiting you in a different way, so what is your take on how both schools are approaching you?

DM: "Yes, they are. Coach Carroll thinks I should play DB at USC and go pro playing DB. Coach Stoops wants me to play running back, and all over the field on offense. He wants me in the slot at receiver and at running back. Right now, I think I am leaning towards playing offense. I want the ball in my hands. I know I can play running back in college."

JH: Isn't is interesting how it has broken down for you? You have a definite choice of not only two great schools, but they are so different in how they see you with their programs that you can easily see the differences?

DM: "That is true, and I am leaning towards playing offense. If I want to play defense I know where I have to go. And if I want to play offense, I know where I have to go. I am just taking this little time that I have and just decide on that in the next couple of weeks."

JH: Lets take the side of the ball part out of it for a moment. Tell me what you like about USC and about Oklahoma, and what do you think of the programs at this time?

DM: "USC has a great program. Coach Carroll is doing a great job there since he became the coach. I don't think they have lost in three years and they are up for the National Championship this year. I would love to be a part of that. Coach Carroll has been doing a great job, but Coach Stoops has been doing an even better job at Oklahoma.

"They have been in two of the last three National Championship games and they have won a National Championship under Coach Stoops. I know this year wasn't quite what they wanted, but that was because they played a lot of young talent. I know they are going to be much better over the next couple of years. They are both great programs, and both have great opportunities for myself."

JH: With all that being said at this point, what are you thinking?

DM: "I still have some things to think through, but right now I want to play offense. Actually, I have always wanted to play offense and I have a great relationship with the OU coaches. USC is a great school and a great program, and they bring a lot to the table. OU wants me on offense and they have a great program. USC wants me on defense and they have a great program and will play for the National Championship.

"That is a tough decision right now, but I think I want to be an offensive player in college. And feel I can be a good offensive player in college. I need to continue to talk to the coaches and hear what they have to say to make sure I am making the best decision for me."

JH: You are playing in the Scout Network U.S. Army All-American game in January, and I know you are playing basketball. Are you still able to stay in football shape for the game?

DM: "I haven't been doing extra running or anything because we run so much in basketball. I have been trying to lift weights and maintain my speed and agility. I do a couple of things on my own, so I have been trying to work out hard. I am going to be ready for the game when it is time to play in the game."

JH: I hear you are a very good basketball player, especially on defense?

DM: "Right now I think I am doing pretty well. I am leading our team in scoring, and in the last couple of games I had 16 points in both games. I am the leading scorer right now.I am doing pretty well within my team."

JH: Coach White says you are the designated defensive stopper, and that you cover the best player on the other team no matter if he is 6-9, 5-10 or somewhere in between. Is that true? DM: "That is just really what I am here for, but lately I have been able to generate a little offense. I think I am a great defensive player. I do love playing defense in basketball and feel it can turn a game around."

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