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Heisman contender still picking A's over NFL

Murray reaffirms commitment ahead of Big 12 title game
MLB.com @JaneMLB

Kyler Murray, the college football sensation who just months ago agreed to a deal with the A's that included a signing bonus worth nearly $5 million, still plans to leave the gridiron for baseball at season's end.

The A's first-round Draft pick in June -- coming in at No. 9 overall -- and their No. 4 prospect, Murray has since quarterbacked the University of Oklahoma to an 11-1 record and a spot in the Big 12 championship game -- set for Saturday against Texas -- with a potential College Football Playoff berth on the line.

Kyler Murray, the college football sensation who just months ago agreed to a deal with the A's that included a signing bonus worth nearly $5 million, still plans to leave the gridiron for baseball at season's end.

The A's first-round Draft pick in June -- coming in at No. 9 overall -- and their No. 4 prospect, Murray has since quarterbacked the University of Oklahoma to an 11-1 record and a spot in the Big 12 championship game -- set for Saturday against Texas -- with a potential College Football Playoff berth on the line.

Murray has also emerged as a favorite to win the Heisman Trophy, throwing for 37 touchdowns and 3,674 yards while rushing for 853 yards and 11 scores in 12 games. Yet on Monday, he reaffirmed his plans to maintain his pact with the A's when the Sooners' season concludes.

Murray and the A's agreed to a $4.66 million signing bonus. As part of the deal, Oakland allowed him to return to the football field for one more year.

"I feel like I can play in the NFL," Murray told reporters. "But as far as giving [football] up, as of now that's the plan."

His agent, Scott Boras, also said as much earlier this month in an interview with The Oklahoman.

"Any judgements made as to him executing his contractual commitments, understand who Kyler is," Boras said. "He's committed to his team at OU, and he's also committed to the Oakland A's."

On the diamond, Murray hit .296 with 10 home runs and 47 RBIs in 51 games while manning center field for the Sooners following a productive Cape Cod League stint last summer. The two-sport star is expected to be in a baseball uniform again in Spring Training.

Jane Lee has covered the A's for MLB.com since 2010.

Oakland Athletics, Kyler Murray