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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Deleted Scenes: Football & Family for Murray Brothers

In today's Telegraph, I have a story on the close relationship between Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray and his brother, Josh, who is a walk-on safety this season.

It's a pretty long piece, but I didn't come anywhere close to using all the material I had. So, if you're still interested in reading more about Aaron and Josh, here are a bunch of quotes that didn't make the cut for the story...

Mark Richt on what he thinks about Josh and Aaron playing together...
"It's neat that they're both here together. Josh hasn't played football in a long time, but he hasn't lost his desire to hit somebody. I think it's wonderful to have them both on the same campus, and that never would have happened if they'd done it the normal way. But here's a guy that plays pro baseball and sits out long enough that now he's on the same college football team as his brother."

Richt on Josh's impact...
"He's a mature guy. You can see him, he has a heart for people and wants to help other guys out. He knows he's young in the system and learning everything, but he's mature, much more mature than most first-year guys. I think guys like him, know he cares about Georgia, cares about them, and he's doing a good job."

Joe Cox on the relationship between Josh and Aaron...

"It's really weird because I look at how old Josh is compared to Aaron. That's like me with my brother. My brother, I mean, I wouldn't say we were competitors because he was so much older than me, but he used to beat me at every single thing we did. So I'm sure his brother made him tough too. Being the type of older brother he is I'm sure he stayed on him, played against him and made him a better player."

Cox on what kind of impact Josh can have on Aaron...
"You can tell how close they are. Some people it might get them in trouble if they had a family member close by. You can tell that family is a real tight knit family and that Aaron looks up to his older brother. And Josh cares a lot about Aaron. I think it's a good thing for him to have his brother here."

Aaron Murray on what brought Josh to Georgia...
"It didn't start until I was up here or right before I left. In December we started talking about it a little bit. The longer I was up here, he came up to visit a couple times and liked it up here. He was still looking forward to going to college and was trying to figure out if he wanted to go to USF or Florida or Florida State or something like that. He really liked it up here and he thought it would be nice for him to come up here with me since I was so far away from home, and I guess the idea popped up that if he was going to come up here, he might as well walk on."

Aaron on whether Josh has intercepted him yet...
"Not yet. He deflected one pass in the summer in a seven-on-seven session. But other than that I haven't gone up against him too many times."

Aaron on his parents' reaction to Josh being at Georgia...

"They're extremely happy. They have an excuse to come visit us now, and you never know, my sister might come up here, too. So if all three of us are up here my parents might have to move up here. I think they enjoy having the opportunity to come and hang out with both of us at the same time."

Aaron on what it's like to have Josh around...
"It's like having a friend here. We're extremely close. We hang out all the time. I'll go to his apartment and we'll play Wii golf all day or go play racquetball or basketball. We always hang out."

Josh Murray on the decision to come to Georgia...

"For me, I'm very close to my family, and that was one of the reasons I stopped playing baseball was to be close to my family, to see my brother grow up, see my sister grow up. Another thing was that I always had such a passion for football, and finally the moment came when I thought, I still have a couple of years of eligibility left, I need to do something, I really want to play football. We talked about it a little bit, and I said to Aaron, I don't want to go up there and play if it's going to be a distraction to you. He said, ‘Oh, no, definitely come up here to play.' Orson wanted me to play, Aaron wanted me to play, and it kind of came down to a family decision. It's Aaron's show now. I had my time, now it's his turn to do his thing. But the decision was definitely one of the best I've made. It's awesome up here in Athens."

Josh on his baseball career...

"It was frustrating to say the least. I was drafted to play with the Brewers, and there were a lot of high expectations. Unfortunately, some injuries and just a loss of passion for some reason. Being away from family was tough, but I think I kind of got burned out with baseball. I'd been playing my whole life. Once I got to the Brewers, I did real well in spring training, but once the grind of the season came in, the passion left, and you've really got to love the game to play. I just didn't love it anymore, and I was forcing myself to play for four or five years just because of what they did for me. One year they even let me go home to try to get my act together, but the passion just wasn't there. It's really hard to devote your life to something that you really don't love. So I finally had to make the decision, and I talked with them, they gave me my release, and they said whenever you want to come back, you can come back. But the passion just wasn't there. It's always been for football."

Josh on why he prefers football...
"I'm a very intense person, and my mom never let me get into football when I was younger because she didn't want me to get hurt. But she learned her lessons from her first child, and then Aaron plays football and was very successful. It's just – baseball wasn't as intense for me anymore. It just didn't have that drive and passion. Football, when it came to it, I couldn't keep saying that my mom never let me get into football. I just need to go out there and take advantage of the opportunity. It's tough throwing myself out there, especially when I haven't played in like 10 years. But I knew if I didn't, I'd regret it the rest of my life. I still have a lot of ability and if I don't put it to use, I'm really disrespecting God."

Josh on the feedback he got from coaches...
"I talked to Coach Martinez quite a bit, and I think he was excited. He saw the passion that I had. It's just very nice coming up here and playing with a team. I'm out here all the time. It was tough playing with the Brewers because it was kind of an individual thing, but it's nice with a team. I wanted to be part of a team atmosphere again, and I'm going to dedicate all my efforts to this. It's exciting, and it's nice being out here."

Josh on his impact on Aaron...

"I hope it doesn't distract him so much, but I hope it's nice for him. It's nice for me having family up here because it's always tough when you're away from family for too long. I hope it's going well for him. I'm trying to stay away and let him do his own thing. But he'll come over and we'll play a little Wii sometimes and just hang out and bond as brothers. He's my best friend, too, so it's nice for me to have him up here as well."

3 comments:

hoodawg said...

David, your article made me want to go play catch with my brother. Great piece.

Lee said...

Dude i totally missed this story if it was mentioned earlier that Josh had come to uga. But its a great story and i am excited to hear about it. I hope Josh continues to do well.

It also makes me remember seeing the video of Aaron talking about his brother when he committed to UGA. Its obvious they are very close.

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