By Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal
An NFL opportunity for the career-leading rebounder at Ole Miss was short-lived.
Former Rebels basketball player Murphy Holloway signed a free agent contract with Baltimore just minutes after the draft concluded on April 27 but was cut by the defending Super Bowl champions on Tuesday.
Holloway began to hear from NFL scouts late during the basketball season. His focus turned to football after he attended the Portsmouth Invitational, a college basketball showcase for NBA scouts, and measured slightly less than 6-foot-6.
In discussions with local media prior to leaving for Baltimore, Holloway acknowledged his athleticism as an asset but noted the importance of learning technique and other aspects of playing the NFL.
Those details apparently played a part in the Ravens’ quick decision.
In a story posted to the Baltimore Sun’s website Monday evening, Ravens coach John Harbaugh spoke of Holloway: “It’s a tough adjustment. The thing about Murphy is he’s got some skills. He can catch, he can run. He’s got nice ball skills. He showed that. He has no problem snatching the ball. The rest of it – just everything from his stance to understanding the plays and all that, the way you move in football – is a little different than in basketball.”
The Ravens were not the only NFL team to express interest in Holloway.
In a meeting with local media before leaving for Baltimore, Holloway, an Irmo, S.C., native, said he had no interest in pursuing a lower level of professional football, such as the Canadian Football League. He was also lukewarm to the idea of playing professional basketball overseas, though he did not rule it out.
“Got some decisions to make in these next few days,” Holloway wrote on his Twitter account. “It’s good to have options but I hate making (life) changing decisions.”