After Late Transfer, Freshman Fordham Punter Making an Impact


Published: October 22, 2009

Patrick Murray, FCRH ’13, had only been on a college football roster for a few days before starting at punter for Fordham on Sept. 19 against Columbia, but his short stint as a Ram has already garnered praise from his coach and recognition around the Patriot League. Murray is currently ranked fifth in the nation for punting at the Football Championship Subdivision level.

Murray missed the season opener against the University of Rhode Island after transferring from the University of Delaware to Fordham.

“I was at another school prior to Fordham,” Murray said. “I didn’t really like it and it wasn’t for me. My mom went to Fordham and suggested that I should check it out. When I came to Fordham, I really liked it.”

Originating from Don Bosco Prep in Ramsey, NJ, which has a nationally recognized football program, Murray encountered many changes when he got to Fordham. “When I came here I had to make some adjustments,” Murray said. “There were different goal posts and different formations of punting. It’s been interesting, but I have been able to adjust to that.”

Despite missing summer camp and Fordham’s first game, Murray was able to pick up the Fordham system very quickly. “I definitely feel that I am fitting into it,” Murray said. “On the first day of practice, the guys immediately welcomed me in. I felt that I was part of the team immediately.”

Rams’ long snapper James Crockett, FCRH’10, welcomed the arrival of Murray to the team and quickly worked to develop chemistry. “He has done a great job for us,” Crockett said. “The biggest thing was getting him comfortable with my snaps. Once he got comfortable with timing and everything, he started believing.”

Making his first appearance in a college game against the Columbia Lions, Murray stood out as a lone bright spot in a 40-28 loss. Murray had an outstanding individual performance, punting six times for 274 yards, for an average of 45.7 yards per punt. Two of his kicks landed inside the Columbia 20 yard line, helping the Rams keep the pressure on the Lions’ end, while his longest punt of the day was a 54-yarder.

As a result of his exceptional performance, he earned Patriot League Special Teams Player of the Week honors.

“It was the start of everything for me,” Murray said. “Doing something like that was awesome for me. I want this team to be great. I want to be a part of it and help it in any way I can.”

Playing in a college football game would be nerve-racking for any freshman, but Murray took his unique  challenge head-on and focused on the task at hand. “It’s an interesting feeling,” Murray said. “I came in immediately and instantly I was thrown into the action. I’ve done pretty well for myself. I’ve just got to keep going.”

Murray followed his debut performance with another good game by punting 4 times for 183 yards with an average of 45.8 per punt and a long of 73 yards in a Patriot league 20-12 loss to Colgate on Sept. 26.

Murray and the Rams finally got their first win of the season against Old Dominion on Oct. 3. Murray had another strong game, punting four times for 187 yards with an average of 46.8 per punt, with two of his punts landing inside Old Dominion’s 20 yard line. “It was a nice feeling finally getting a victory,” Murray said. “We hope to keep going on from here and get more victories.”

Head coach Tom Masella said, “Murray has been doing a great job this season—he is second in the country in punting and is kicking well for us.

“Anytime you can change field position in this game it’s a big help, and Patrick does that with his kicking.”  With a few solid games under his belt,  it will be interesting to see how Murray will fare in the rest of the season. “I am pushing for greatness and I want this team to be great as well,” Murray said.