Former South Carolina recruit, Receiver O.J. Murdock commits suicide
A spokesperson for the Tampa Bay Police Department stated that O.J. Murdock was discovered in his car parked in front of Middleton High School at 8:30 a.m. ET. The 25-year-old O.J. Murdock had sustained what was identified by the police as a self-inflicted gunshot wound. O.J. Murdock had attended high school at Middleton before graduating in 2005.
The reserve receiver O.J. Murdock was quickly transported to the Tampa General Hospital under critical condition, and O.J. Murdock was declared dead within a few hours.
The Tennessee Titans had put down O.J. Murdock’s name on the "did not report" list after he failed to report for the first two days of training camp due to what the team described were “personal reasons.”
At high school, O.J. Murdock was a top college prospect and was even and was even listed as the 10th-best wide receiver in the country by Rivals.com. O.J. Murdock had numerous scholarships lined up for him, which included the nation’s best football programs such as Florida State and Miami, but he chose to play receiver under coach Steve Spurrier at South Carolina.
However, things did not go according to plan as O.J. Murdock only played four games for South Carolina during his rookie season before being redshirted. Things took a turn for the worse when O.J. Murdock was suspended by the team for the 2006 season following an arrest on shoplifting charges at a Florida departmental store the same year.
O.J. Murdock dropped out of South Carolina, transferred to Pearl River Community College in Mississippi and maintained distance from football for a complete year. The receiver then moved on to Fort Hays State in Kansas, a Division II College.
O.J. Murdock had earned his lesson from the turbulent time at South Carolina and was quoted by the Forts Hays State student newspaper for saying, for acknowldiging the incident’s positive effect on his life.
“It really made me just grow up,” stated O.J. Murdock. “It is bad that bad things have to happen to you for you to grow up sometimes, but it is another stepping stone in life I guess.”
During his senior year at Fort Hays State in 2010, O.J. Murdock raked 60 catches for 1,290 yards including 12 touchdowns. That was enough to earn him some attention, so that O.J. Murdock was invited to the NFL Scouting Combine.
O.J. Murdock was signed by the Tennessee Titans in July 201, but was forced to sit out the whole season and was place on the” injury/reserve” list after sustaining an Achilles injury during the early stages of training camp last offseason.
At South Carolina, O.J. Murdock shared the spotlight with other top receivers such as Sidney Rice and Kenny McKinley. Ironically, Kenny McKinley, who also got a shot at being an NFL receiver died on September 20, 2010 due to a self-inflicted gunshot wound.