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Former FHSU standout found dead in Tampa

7/30/2012

By The Hays Daily News

TAMPA, Fla. -- A former Fort Hays State University NCAA Division II All-American and Tennessee Titans wide receiver committed suicide Monday morning, according to the Tampa Police Department.

According to a new release from the Tampa Police Department, Orenthal James Murdock, 25, was found in his car at approximately 8:30 a.m. Monday in front of Middleton High School -- the school from which he graduated. He suffered an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was transported to Tampa General Hospital in critical condition where he was pronounced dead at 10:43 a.m.

Murdock, an undrafted free agent who signed with the Titans last year, missed the entire 2011 season with an Achilles injury.

He did not report to training camp this weekend, and Titans coach Mike Munchak had said Murdock had been excused for "personal reasons," according to NBC Sports.

Murdock played two seasons for FHSU where he was a two-time all-MIAA selection. He earned second team honors in 2009 and 2010.

He set multiple records in 2010, including records for single season receiving yards (1,290), receiving yards per game for a career (94.6), average receiving yards per reception for a career (20.9) and receiving yards per reception for a season (21.5). He also was second on FHSU's lists for single-season receiving touchdowns (12) and and single-season receiving yards per game (117.3).

Murdock started his college career at the University of South Carolina. He was there for two season before he was removed from the team due to off-the-field disciplinary reasons. He then attended Pearl River Community College in Poplarville, Miss., before transferring to FHSU.