With the overall first pick for the 2019 NFL draft, the Arizona Cardinals picked Kyler Murray. The quarterback is a quarter Korean coming from his maternal grandmother who is a South Korean national. Murray played the quarterback position at the University of Oklahoma. As a Sooner, he won the Heisman trophy last year, according to NBC. He makes history as the first Asian American to be picked number one in the NFL draft and also being the only player to be drafted both by the NFL and MLB in the top ten.
"I'm ready to go. I'm a winner."
— NFL (@NFL) April 26, 2019
Kyler Murray, Heisman Trophy winner. pic.twitter.com/5rOdchvY3l
— ESPN (@espn) December 9, 2018
His mother, a half black, half Korean woman, was born on September 25, 1964, as Mi Sun Henderson. She married Kevin Murray, a black man, who played the quarterback position at Texas A&M from 1983 to 1986, according to Wikipedia.
Now, she’s known simply as Missy Murray and she instilled that Asian pride in him. When Kyler Murray was seen with a Kimono jacket, his mom said that was on purpose.
“When we saw the jacket it was like, ‘Gotta have it’,” Missy Murray told The Oklahoman. “Cause we’re all about representing our Asian culture. I know a lot of people are like, ‘What is he?’ I get asked that a lot myself. So we do subtle things to represent that. That subtle statement he made on Saturday came across as kind of a strong statement, but it’s awesome.”
Last year, Murray was drafted to play baseball professionally by the Oakland Athletics. He was picked number 9 overall as an outfielder and signed a $4.6 million contract. Murray stated that he will like to be a two-sport athlete but prefers football. He will forfeit $3.6 million of his MLB salary and return most of his $1.5 million signing bonus due to his new commitment to the NFL.
The 21-year-old quarterback is expected to reach a four year $35 million deal with the Arizona Cardinals, according to Sports Illustrated. With all that money and being the number one pick, Murray is ready for the expectations.
“As a kid, that’s what you dream of: going to an organization and being that guy, turning the program around, organization around, winning Super Bowls,” Murray told NFL.com. “Like I said, I don’t shy away from hard work. I feel like I’m not here to lose games or go through the motions. I’m here to change things up, so I’m ready to go. I can’t wait.”
There are a couple more Asian Americans waiting to be drafted. There’s safety Taylor Rapp and kicker Justin Yoon. Good luck to them and congratulations to Kyler Murray.