Murdock shot himself while sitting in his car on Monday, parked outside of Middleton High School in Tampa. He was found in critical condition and taken to the hospital at 8:30 am, suffering from a self-inflicted gunshot wounds to his head.
The 25-year old Murdock signed with the Tennessee Titans one year ago, but never played a single game. Around 3:30 am, Murdock sent a text message to Fort Hays State receivers coach Al McCray.
“It was like, ‘Coach, I appreciate everything you’ve done for me and my family,’” the coach told the Tampa Bay Times.
“At the end of the text he said, ‘I apologize.’ I figured he’s apologizing because he texted me so early.”
The coach says that Murdock seemed to be in good spirits just days before the incident took place. As a receiver at Middleton High School, Murdock was rated the 10th best wide receiver in the nation. He only played four games for the University of South Carolina, however. He was arrested for shoplifting in a Florida Department store and suspended from the team.
Murdock finished his college career with Pearl River Community College in Mississippi and then Fort Hays State in Kansas. During his senior year, he had 60 catches for 1,290 yards and 12 touchdowns.
He was drafted by the Tennessee Titans, but never suited up for them. The Titans issued this statement.
“We are shocked and saddened to hear of O.J. Murdock’s death this morning. In his brief time here, a number of our players, coaches and staff had grown close to O.J., and this is a difficult time for them. He spent the last year battling back from an Achilles injury as he prepared for this year’s training camp. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends as they try to cope with this tragedy.”
Oh my! Really sad.