The chance of a high school athlete playing major league baseball is .4 percent. The odds of a high school athlete playing in the National Football League are .08 percent. The chance of having the opportunity to choose either is slim to none. Kyler Murray from Oklahoma University has achieved this rarity.
After playing quarterback for Texas A&M, Kyler Murray decided to take his talents to the baseball diamond for Oklahoma University. He did not play his best right away, but after coming back from a disappointing first season, Murray began to catch the public’s attention.
In his second season, he had a .296 batting average with 47 RBIs, 10 stolen bases and 10 home runs. After his second season, he declared for the MLB draft, where he was drafted ninth overall by the Oakland Athletics. In signing his contract, Kyler Murray received a $4.6 million signing bonus. However, Murray wanted to finish his final year of football for the Oklahoma Sooners.
Despite being smaller than average for a quarterback at only 5’10, Murray had a fantastic second season playingfor the Oklahoma Sooners.
Kyler was in the running for the Heisman Trophy, the award presented annually to the most talented college football player, from the beginning of his second season.
As the season progressed, it only solidified his spot in thefront-running for the esteemed trophy.
Murray finished the season with over 4,300 passingyards and was responsible for 42 touchdowns. WhileMurray was playing for Texas A&M, coach Kevin Sumlin clocked Kyler’s top speed at 22 miles per hour. This insane speed was responsible for Murray rushing for over 1,000 yards in the season. After another great season, Murray decided to also declare for the NFL draft.
This has put him in a difficult situation, because as a quarterback, his team would be very dependent on him, especially if his talent carries over into the NFL. Therefore, he will not be able to play both sports like BoJackson and Deion Sanders did.
His ability to translate his talent to the NFL is a big “if”, because, as previously stated, Murray is very small for an NFL quarterback. Furthermore, if you look at the history books of Heisman winners that were draft busts, it is not a positive outlook.
A bright side to playing in the NFL is that he will get more endorsement deals and he will be in the spotlightfrom day one. Some fans speculated that his NFL signing contract would be larger, but the Oakland Athletics said that they would match the price that an NFL team is willing to pay for him.
In the long run, he would likely make more money playing baseball because he will have a longer career in that sport. It is not as physically demanding and he will not have to worry about multiple concussions throughout his career. If he played baseball, it is likely that he could get a multimillion dollar contract well into his 30s.
A perfect example of this would be Andrew McCutchen, who signed a three-year, $50 million contract at the age of 32. This is not very likely to happen in the NFL.It seems as if the only downsides to baseball are that it is not as paparazzi-prone and Murray would have to spend a few years in the minor leagues before he makes it into the spotlight.
Could this be a deciding factor for Murray? Will he choose the fame or the money?