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Oklahoma State basketball: Cowboys need Kamari Murphy's toughness

Brooklyn native will be the main man in the middle for OSU after Michael Cobbins' injury.
by John Helsley Published: January 7, 2014

Kamari Murphy is Brooklyn bred.

“Born and raised,” the Cowboy sophomore said.

Brooklyn tough, too.

“He's a real tough guy,” said Brian Williams, Murphy's Oklahoma State teammate. “I feel Brooklyn had a lot to do with that. The way he plays, real scrappy, matches that Brooklyn style of basketball.”

Murphy might need to lean on that toughness, as an undersized big man — for now OSU's lone proven big man — in the wake of Michael Cobbins' season-ending injury.

The Cowboys talk about rallying together to offset the loss of Cobbins, with a call for many players, big and small, to absorb the void. Still, the main focus falls on Murphy.

And it's a focus he welcomes.

“That day after he got hurt, I was getting so many texts,” Murphy said of friends urging him to seize the opportunity. “I was like, ‘I'm ready for it, mentally and physically ready for it.'

“I know the coaches believe in me, too. It's just something I have to pick up and go with.”

There's a sense of urgency, too. The Cowboys are coming off a loss at Kansas State in their Big 12 opener, with big and bulky Texas visiting Gallagher-Iba Arena Wednesday. Tip time is 8 p.m. to accommodate an ESPNU telecast.

The Longhorns' rotation features four players 6-foot-8 or taller, including leading scorer Jonathan Holmes and top rebounder and shot-blocker Cameron Ridley, a 285-pound bruiser who will command Murphy's attention.

“I never got to play him last year, he was pretty good, I guess,” said the 220-pound Murphy. “I've seen some highlights. Very aggressive. But nothing I've never seen before.

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by John Helsley
OSU Reporter Sr.
John Helsley grew up in Del City, reading all the newspapers and sports magazines he could get his hands on. And Saturday afternoons, when the Major League Game of the Week was on, he'd keep a scorecard for the game. So the sports appeal was was...
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