Former lineman: Houston first program to ‘actively tank a football season’
Justin Murphy, two days after his departure from the team was confirmed, criticized Houston in a Thursday night tweetstorm that called out head coach Dana Holgorsen and University administration for their handling of the 2019 season so far.
The former offensive lineman, who made three starts for the Cougars after transferring from UCLA as a graduate, labeled Houston as the first program to “actively tank a football season.”
In the Twitter thread, Murphy detailed his and the Cougars’ woes after its 1-3 start that included four games in an 18-day period, calling it the “hardest thing as an athlete I’ve ever done,” given his three prior knee surgeries.
Murphy played in Houston’s games against Oklahoma, Prairie View and Washington State, but was told to stay off the team plane ahead of the matchup against North Texas, he said, to heal “mentally and physically.”
After missing the UNT game, Murphy explained in the thread, his focus turned to “self-preservation.” He informed Holgorsen of his decision.
“‘I don’t have time to talk, ” Holgorsen said, according to Murphy. “‘I only have time to coach.'”
Murphy admitted his disappointment in Holgorsen’s reaction, and said he believed he deserved an “eye-to-eye farewell or a proper handshake.”
“As a person that is guaranteed a non-salary compensation of $3.4 million to go along with a $300,000 base salary for the 2019 year, one might think you’d have a better outlook on the players that contribute to your compensation,” Murphy said. “I mean this is a team sport, right?”
Murphy detailed other difficulties he is facing, including more potential knee surgeries, but said he still has more than $14,000 left on his athletic scholarship.
“One might look at my collegiate athletic career as a series of unfortunate events,” Murphy said, “but if a long football career has taught me one thing it’s you can only control the things you can control.”
Athletics has not responded to a request for comment.