Kyler Murray: Telling A's that he's committed to playing in NFL 'was tough'

ByJake Trotter ESPN logo
Saturday, February 23, 2019

NORMAN, Okla. -- Former Oklahomaquarterback Kyler Murray said Saturday that while it was "obviously hard" to tell the Oakland Athletics he wouldn't be playing baseball, he remains committed to pursuing the NFL.

"For me, it was something I've known for a while," Murray said of his football plans. "That organization, being with the A's, was the best possible situation for me just because they were so great throughout the football season, kind of leaving me alone and letting me do my own thing, and at the same time letting me know how much I meant to them and that type of stuff. Telling them was tough."

That doesn't mean Murray, whowas drafted with the ninth overall pick by the A's last summer, is about to change his mind, as Oakland retains his baseball rights.

"I mean, they can hold out all the hope they want to," Murray said. "I'm going to play football."

While holding the Heisman Trophy, Murray was honored Saturday during a first-half timeout of Oklahoma's men's basketball game against Texas at the Lloyd Noble Center, which the Sooners won 69-67.

Murray could become the first athlete ever to be drafted in the first round of both sports.

"The night I got drafted to the A's -- obviously it was a great day of my life -- but I've been a football player my whole life," Murray said. "I didn't know how the NFL felt about me before this season because I hadn't played.

"Going into this [football] season, [the goal] was to put myself in the best position possible. Obviously, when you win, good things happen. A lot of good stuff happened this year."

In his first and only season as a college starting quarterback, Murray led Oklahoma to the College Football Playoff and captured the Heisman Trophy, giving the Sooners their second consecutive Heisman winner after 2017 winnerBaker Mayfield.

Despite signing a contract with the A's, Murray announced this month he would enter the NFL draft and play football instead. He reiterated Saturday that he will be going to next week's NFL combine, although he has yet to reveal how much he will be participating in Indianapolis.

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