April 20, 2001
TROY MURPHY: I just want to start by thanking some people. I would like to thank Coach Brey and his staff. I would like to thank my teammates. I would like to thank Tony Rolinski (ph) , Skip Meyer, Bernie. I'd like to think everybody. I've had a great time here at Notre Dame, and I am going to chase a dream that I've had for my entire life, and I'm going to put myself in the NBA draft, and that's about it.
COACH BREY: I'll follow up on that. Today ?? today I look at it as a celebration, you know, of this young man's career. You've got to remember, when he came to Notre Dame, it's not like they just went to the Final Four won the National Championship. He came here when it wasn't the hottest basketball program in the country.
And, you know, I think his individual statistics speak for themselves. What we did this year as a team was certainly a lot of his doing as a leader and on the floor, and I'm really proud of him. It was a big decision on his part. It was a tough decision. I think that he gave it a lot of thought. He really did his homework on it. Got with his family. Got with his AU coach, Coach Segona (ph), myself and I think it is a great decision, because it is his decision. I really want to emphasize that. We fully support him. We'll miss him, but we'll be watching him closely and we know that he's really a poster boy for our basketball program out there right now.
Q. Troy, I just wanted to check to see, are you going to be staying on campus through the end of exams or do you plan on leaving before exams start?
TROY MURPHY: I also would like to thank Pat Holmes, because he really helps me out, as all the guys on the team.
Based on that question, Pat has been helping me out, and I'm going to finish up the semester. I have two classes that don't meet, so I'll be able to finish those, and I have some papers and stuff that I have to hand in. I'm going to finish up the semester like that. So I will get the credit for the semester so I'll have one year left to graduate.
Q. Troy, what was the determining factor in your deciding that it was definitely time to go, as opposed to before, when you said you were not sure?
TROY MURPHY: I think going back to last year, I went out to Hawaii and I went out to the camp and I thought about it a lot out there, and I came close last year to leaving, and then I thought that I would do another ?? another year, and then I would leave.
I went through the year and I had a lot of fun. I really enjoyed playing for Coach Brey. And when it came down to me to make the decision, it was tough for me to make the decision because of the relationship that I have with Coach Brey. I decided to kind of test it out and see what it was like, and based on that, I really ?? it kind of got my appetite going and I decided that's what I want to do.
It was a hard decision, but a decision that I'm happy with.
Q. Troy, I'm curious what avenues were available to you to investigate your potential NBA worth and how many of those you explored?
TROY MURPHY: I explored every avenue possible. Coach Brey really helped me out with putting people in contact to call, who I could talk to about different things, different ways to go. Based on conversations that I had with people, I decided that I would like to ?? I would like to take the next step.
COACH BREY: If I could follow up on that, you know, when he put his name in about ten days ago, it gave us more of a presence to talk to some front office people, and no one knows where he is going to go.
I think the bottom line is his stock is very high, and his stock is getting hire. Some of the rule changes, especially with the zone defense coming in, is coming in at a time when a skilled guy, which he certainly is, and a guy that has a great feel for the game increases his worth. So some of the rules changes help that.
The other point that I would like to make now, again, with all this phenomena of people coming out, he should not be lumped in with a lot of these very young kids coming out, high school, coming out after freshman or sophomore year. This is a guy who played three years of college basketball and dominated in a major conference. He is very ready for this challenge. I think when I think about the guys projected in the Top?15, he and Shane Battier are the most ready to go do this thing.
So even though he has a year of eligibility, I don't think he should be lumped in with this phenomena that we are talking about the last couple weeks, because he has a great track record the last three years. He is ready to do it.
Q. Troy, what kind of indications did you get from scouts about where you would go?
COACH BREY: I think right now you could solidly say 10 to 15. But Rhett Auerbach (ph) made a comment the other day that he feels he could get into the Top?10.
Again a lot of that right now is still speculation, but again, I think his stock is very solid and I get back to some of the rules changes in that he is older and experienced, certainly makes him a hot commodity right now.
Q. There's speculation that you had already signed with an agent. Is that true?
TROY MURPHY: No, that's not true.
Q. Last year, you said that last year you came close to leaving. How close did you come to staying this year?
TROY MURPHY: Came extremely close to staying. I had, you know, I thought at the beginning of the year, I thought I would try ?? try and help this team get to an NCAA tournament, and as it came down, I had a lot of fun this year. It was a hard year, but it was a lot of fun. Being able to play for Coach Brey really had an impact on me staying, but in the end, you know, it's a dream that I've had my whole life and I think I'm ready for that ?? for that dream.
TROY MURPHY: Definitely. I didn't think it would be extremely hard at the beginning of the year. But like I said, based on being able to play for Coach Brey, that really had a huge, you know, impact on my decision. I mean, it was an extremely hard decision that I thought about for weeks, and it just came down to me just trying to ?? trying to do this thing.
TROY MURPHY: Just on the court, just becoming a better player. He has allowed me to do ?? to did different things on the court that I think I wasn't able to do, and he's given me confidence to try these things. He's really worked with me individually, you know, when he didn't have to.
Off the court, he really gave me a lot of insight about the way to act and things like that. He stuck by me through thick and thin, and that really says a lot about the person and the coach that he is.
He's just given me confidence to not only ?? to be able to play inside and outside, not always stay inside, to shoot the ball, to shoot 3?pointers and tough like that.
Q. You took a charge in the last game ??
TROY MURPHY: Took a charge the last game. (Laughter).
Q. We figured once you took the charge, you were ready to go.
TROY MURPHY: That's it.
TROY MURPHY: No, I didn't worry about anybody else. I just did what I felt ?? you know, I felt I was ready. Everyone could come out, and that could be fine. No one could come out. But, you know, I feel that I'm ready and I am ready to do it.
Q. Have you thought about how?
TROY MURPHY: Yeah, I definitely am going to graduate. Pat Holmes is our academic adviser, and he has already devised a plan to help me graduate. I'd like to graduate about Matty's class and them. I'd like to do something like that. That would be kind of cool.
TROY MURPHY: To kind of put ?? put my name in there and get a feel for what it was like, you know, it kind of got me going and reminded me of, you know, the dream that I've had my entire life and what I wanted to do, and I think that ?? by putting my name in there, really, you know, I saw that this was definitely something that I wanted to do and I wanted to do now.
Yeah, I do enjoy college. College, it's a great place. You know, it's a country club, it really is.
TROY MURPHY: Third grade. I can remember being in third grade playing on a little hoop in the basement, and ever since then, I've always watched, you know, basketball and watched NBA games and stuff like that, and it's always been something that I, would like to do.
TROY MURPHY: No, not really. Anywhere, really. I really don't care. I'll play anywhere.
TROY MURPHY: No, I really didn't know. I just got a feeling. I thought a lot about it over the past week or so and thought that it was time. I wanted to get going and start working out and things like that, so I'm going to do that now.
TROY MURPHY: I have talked to a few. I have to start sit down and work all of that stuff out, because I'm not going to sign anything I understand. I have to make sure I understand everything. I've got to sit down with my parents and just go over all that stuff.
TROY MURPHY: I'm going to work out for the teams individually, and, you know, hopefully I guess they have the NBA Draft Lottery sometime in early May, May 13 maybe, and that's where the teams determine where they will pick. And from that I guess I work out for the teams where they have me projected to go, and I'll be prepared for those workouts, and hopefully I can do well.
TROY MURPHY: Not really, no. No conversation has really kind of stuck out or anything like that. I just ?? it's a feeling I have, kind of a feeling when I came here. Something that I'm ready ?? I am ready to do, and when I have to kind of move on and take the next step.
Q. You had it in your mind what you would like to do with your career. What were your dreams about college? Did you exceed those dreams?
TROY MURPHY: I think I did. I really didn't have ?? I wanted to start as a freshman, and that's about it. I really didn't have any dreams like this. I didn't ?? I didn't have any plan or anything like that, but you know, I think surpassed those expectations that I had, and that's about it.
Q. Any games stand out in your mind?
TROY MURPHY: A lot of games stand out. A lot of games, they were fun to play. There were tough times and there were great times. Just like anything else t has to keep on going.
TROY MURPHY: Not yet. I think that's something that an agent would kind of ?? would kind of be concerned with. He would take care of that kind of stuff. He would think a team ?? that I would fit well on a certain team and I would work out for them. I would rather go a couple spots later to a team that I fit in well with, than go higher on a team that I really didn't fit in so well with.
TROY MURPHY: See, I really haven't talked to any teams, anything like that, so I wouldn't know. But I think that would be something that an agent would ?? would kind of worry about, stuff like that.
COACH BREY: Just in the last two weeks ?? and again, it's so early and still so speculative, talked to Donny Walsh of the Pacers about a week ago and he is thinking there are going to be 12 to 15, and there's no question they would really want to investigate Troy.
It looks like the Celtics will be around 11. I think there was concern in the one gentlemen I spoke to, would he still be around at 11. There's a lot of different opinions on him right now as far as number, whatever. And he made a good point. And I think you get educated that if you go 17, but it's a chance to maybe play and develop, more than 11, you know, that's something it take into consideration.
So after the Lottery, you go ?? he won't work out for everybody. He'll work out for a handful. He and his agent will kind of strategically align that.
The thing about him is what ?? I really believe, his stock will go through the roof on the workout. You bring him in for a workout and the workouts that they put him through a lot of skill stuff. First of all, shooting the basketball. Well, I mean, he is going to light up any kind of shooting drill. You know, putting the ball ?? making decisions, footwork. He is the kind of guy that is going to be extremely impressive in the workouts.
So they may be saying 15 right now. After some workouts, I think it is really going to change.
TROY MURPHY: I think coaching changes, it was stuff, being in the summer and everything. It was just a tough time to have a coaching change.
But getting to know Coach Brey and have the opportunity to play for him made it much harder than I thought it would be, and I'm grateful to have played for him for the year and I know he's going to do a great job here at Notre Dame in the future.
TROY MURPHY: No, I haven't talked to Pat. I talked to him a little bit in the summer. He was out in Hawaii at the camp. I haven't talked to him since then. I didn't ask him about anything specifically. I just kind of picked his brain on the NBA and stuff like that.
TROY MURPHY: The guys on the team. The guys on the team, I'll miss the most. You know, hanging out with them, messing around, that Finnegan's place, you know, I'll miss going there. Stuff like that.
TROY MURPHY: I think you start off with a dream, when you're younger and you don't really think about kind of being ?? getting certain things. You know, I don't ?? I didn't ever dream of being an all?team leading scorer at Notre Dame or anything like that. I dreamed of playing in the NBA.
When it comes down to that, it kind of ?? it's something that, you know, you look at it and that's kind of the thing that you want to do and that's the kind of thing that decided ?? I decided to do.
TROY MURPHY: I think a lot of AU coaches get bad names with how they ?? how they deal with their players. Mr. Segona is a guy who ?? he's been there since I've been 14, 15 years old. And he's been a guy who when sometimes you don't want to always do ?? do what's right ?? not what's right, but, you know, you always want to act a certain way and he's going to make sure that you do. He's a guy who has helped me out tremendously and deflected a lot of the calls from agents and everything like that. He gets calls upon calls, and he's been a guy who has helped me out so much and I can't thank him enough.
TROY MURPHY: It was ?? it was hard some days. It was hard when you lose. It was nice when you win. There are good and bad with that kind of thing, so you have to just kind of roll with it.
TROY MURPHY: Not really. I used to watch the Nets a lot. That's about it, really. I never really had any ?? had any favorites until I got into high school. I got up there and then I started watching Keith Van Horn when he played for the Nets and stuff like that.
Q. How hard was it breaking the news to the team?
TROY MURPHY: It was hard. They are easy guys to talk to, so ?? I thought it would be harder than it was. They are happy for me. And they are great a bunch of guys. I'm going to miss them a lot.
TROY MURPHY: No, I think they are going to have a great year next year. You know, it's a decision that I made, and you can't ?? you can't really look back. You have to make the decision ?? when I decided to come here. You can't really look back. There were some tough times early there, freshman year, losing up in Alaska, finishing 7 out of 8 teams and some other schools are doing well. But you can't have any regrets. You just have to go out there and do it. Whatever happens, happens.
COACH BREY: Well, his stock is already kind of locked in. Certainly his agent, whoever he decides upon, will kind of handle it, really, more from this point on, certainly any advice he needs will work with him.
But there's no advantage to going to the Desert Classic and playing. There's no advantage to playing in Chicago with where he's kind of pencilled in, in that ?? at least now, maybe 10 to 15. He can now kind of pick and choose who he wants to work out for and try and move up, and that's kind of the philosophy over the next couple months, until June 27.
TROY MURPHY: It's a big relief. I was talking to my mom and when I told her, she said it was the happiest that I've sounded in months. And, you know, it's been ?? it's been ?? it hangs over your head, and even last year, people were saying when I said I was going to come back, "Oh, well come back in two more years." And people asked me all the time, and it's a relief to finally make this decision. You're confident, but you waver back and forth, but I think it is the right thing to do.
TROY MURPHY: Yeah, they are happy with my decision. They didn't want to influence me into, I guess, making a decision a certain way, and then me, I guess, resenting the fact that ?? you know, kind of blaming them, there were tough times. But there are going to be tough times. And they would rather have me make the decision and do what I want to do. That kind of deal.
TROY MURPHY: I think it will be work. It will be a lot of work. But I think I'm ready for that. I'm ready to do that kind of thing, t play basketball. That's all I could do. I like to play basketball a lot. That's all I do a lot of the time. It's going to be work. This year is fun. It's been fun to hang out with these guys. I don't think I'll have the relationship I have with my teammates next year that I have with my teammates this year, but, what can you do.
TROY MURPHY: Yeah, that's cool. I like the way the game is played and everything like that. It's going to be nice not having that kind of stuff go on. It's going to be real nice.
TROY MURPHY: You know, a coach that could see ?? could see a spot for me, see some sort of role for me on a team, that kind of thing. You know, not going there and sit for three years. Be able to learn and coaches that are willing to learn on you and practice on things that you need to improve on.
COACH BREY: Yeah, I think especially after this year, the attention. I think it was already ?? he was the spokesman for our group all year, and that certainly gets him very ready.
You know, one thing about him, he's passionate about the game. He loves to play. And even more importantly, he loves to work.
So whatever the mission is, to crack into a lineup or get into a rotation or develop a role, he's going to be very willing to do it. And I think that's the advantage he has over a lot of the guys that are projected in that Top?15. He'll outwork guys and understand the role and keep pushing for it on a daily basis.
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