Kyler Murray’s parents, Kevin and Missy Murray, have watched their son excel at both baseball and football. Kyler’s dad, Kevin, was also a multi-sport star and was selected in the MLB draft. Kevin now runs a football training business and played a major role in his son’s development on the field.
Kyler’s mom, Missy, saw a different side of her son. Missy noted her son has had an obsession with being organized since he was young.
“This is a kid that when he was 5 and 6, his toys in his room were color-coordinated,” Missy told The Oklahoman. “All his Power Rangers, all the red ones were together, all the white ones were together. That was me, so he grew up learning that.”
Learn more about Murray’s family.
1. Kyler’s Dad, Kevin, Was Drafted in the 11th Round of the 1982 MLB Draft
Playing multiple sports runs in the Murray family. Like Kyler, Kevin faced a difficult decision on whether to pursue baseball or football. Kevin was selected in the 1982 MLB draft in the 11th round.
Kevin’s baseball career was short-lived as he hit just .161 in 41 games with the Pikeville Brewers, one of the team’s minor league affiliates. Kevin decided to head to Texas A&M to play college football.
2. The Brewers Sued Kevin to Try to Regain His Signing Bonus
According to Sports Illustrated, the Brewers asked for the signing bonus back, but Kevin refused to pay. This led the Brewers to file a lawsuit in 1983.
“You don’t get money to do something and then don’t do it,” Brewers’ lawyer John Dawson told UPI at the time of the lawsuit.
Kevin viewed the signing bonus as his money which is why he refused to pay it back.
“Kevin’s position was that it was his money to keep,” Brewers scouting director Dan Duquette noted to Sports Illustrated. “You can’t force a kid to play a sport he doesn’t want to play. We just wanted the money back.”
3. Kyler Calls His Mom, Missy, His “Best Friend”
Kevin’s impact on Kyler’s development has been well-documented, but his mother has also been a big part of his success. Kyler called his mom his “best friend” during his Heisman Trophy speech.
“To my mom: You’re my best friend,” Murray said, per Dallas News. “I could be up here all day talking about you, but for me, I’m just thankful that you’re my mother, and I love you.”
As for Kyler’s career path, she admitted that things changed over the last year as Kyler played himself into being a top NFL pick.
“Circumstances change,” Missy noted to Sports Illustrated. “Nobody knew he’d be in the position he is.”
4. Kevin Played Quarterback at Texas A&M
Once he made the switch, Kevin was a standout quarterback at Texas A&M. During his four seasons with the Aggies, Kevin threw for 6,506 yards and 48 touchdowns. Kevin broke his ankle in 1984 cutting short the majority of the season and his game never truly recovered. Kevin declared for the NFL draft as a junior during a time when this was uncommon as Sports Illustrated detailed.
Perhaps that helps explain why Murray, having set the SWC’s all-time record for passing touchdowns as a junior, made the unexpected decision to declare for the NFL draft, a rarity in that era. Two teammates close to Murray say the QB was forced out by the looming NCAA hammer. “If he was to stay that senior year,” says one, “we probably would have had some problems.”
Murray, still haunted by the perception that he’d flirted with baseball and by what he’d allegedly told Duquette, and forced to deliver to NFL teams a letter from his doctor attesting to the strength of his rehabbed ankle, went undrafted the next spring. He worked out with the 49ers and the CFL’s Calgary Stampeders but didn’t catch on. By the end of 1988 he was done with football.
5. Kyler’s Father Runs a Football Training Business for Quarterbacks
Kevin is no longer an athlete but still remains close to the game. He runs a football training business specializing in quarterbacks. Kevin is said to have high expectations for his clients, family or otherwise. Missy noted no one is getting a free pass on the field.
“Kevin is a very intense instructor with all his clients and his kid,” Missy explained to Sports Illustrated. “He teaches them all the same way. I’ve been to his lessons, and I’ve been like, ‘You’re being a little too hard.’ But that’s his way, and it works.”
It was Kevin’s business that played a role in Kyler getting discovered at a young age. ESPN detailed how people have been watching Kyler play since he was young.
Jeff Fleener was an assistant coach at Allen High — home of the $60 million, 18,000-seat stadium — when he first heard that Kevin Murray had started a business to train high school and college quarterbacks in the area.
Another coach told him, “Kevin’s son can get it.”
That’s a good tip, right? Son of a former star quarterback is training in your area, be worth your time to check it out.