Head Coach - 5th Season
Murray, hired as Cornell College's 16th head men's basketball coach in August 2009, begins his fifth season leading the Rams.
Murray's Rams are poised to make a run in 2013-14 with a veteran club that returns five starters and more than 85.0 percent of its scoring. Cornell, which finished last season 8-15 overall and 7-11 in the Midwest Conference, brings back eight multi-year letterwinners from a team that improved by five wins and ranked third in NCAA Division III in free throw percentage (77.1). Heading this year's senior class is Reggie Greenwood, a three-time all-conference performer.
Murray enjoyed a successful initial 2009-10 season with the Rams, finishing 15-11 overall and placing fifth in the Iowa Conference at 9-7. Murray's 15 wins are the most by a first-year men's basketball coach in school history. The Rams appeared in the IIAC Tournament for the third consecutive year and landed two first team all-conference performers.
The 2010-11 team posted an 8-17 record and landed two all-conference selections. That season, Cornell ranked second in the IIAC in 3-point percentage (38.0) and third in free throw percentage (72.6).
Prior to his arrival on the Hilltop, Murray spent eight years as an assistant coach at the Division III level with stints at Nebraska Wesleyan University (2001-02), Vassar (N.Y.) College (2002-04) and North Central (2004-09).
Murray helped spark a turnaround at North Central as the top assistant and recruiting coordinator for five seasons in Naperville, Ill. Under Murray's guidance, the Cardinals compiled a 79-51 record after posting only one winning season in 16 previous years.
Murray's 2005-06 North Central team captured the program's first ever College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin Tournament title, posted a school-record 22 wins and secured its first national tournament bid since 1990. North Central finished 16-10 in 2008-09 and qualified for the CCIW Tournament for the third time in four years. Murray coached four all-conference post players during his stay there.
At North Central, Murray worked with the post players and served as head coach for the junior varsity. He also taught courses in North Central's athletic department and oversaw the strength and conditioning of the men's basketball team.
Murray is a 1998 graduate of Chapman (Calif.) University, where he earned a bachelor's degree in film and television. He received a master's degree in education from Capella (Minn.) University in June 2005. Murray played basketball two seasons at Umpqua (Ore.) Community College (1993-95) and one at Chapman (1995-96). He was the team's leading rebounder and third-leading scorer at Umpqua.
Murray and his wife, Jena, reside in North Liberty with their daughter Quinn, 3.