Mens basketball holds first official practice


The team runs drills to start its first practice of the 2022-23 season. Photo by Jakob Milani/The News.

Jakob Milani, Sports Editor

The 2022-23 season officially launched as the Murray State men’s basketball team took the court for the first time on Tuesday, Sept. 27.

The practice was open to media and fans to take in the new look of the basketball team, including the return of Head Coach Steve Prohm, who takes over for former coach Matt McMahon.

Prohm spoke on the significance of the first practice, which he said is just as important as any other day ahead.

“We had a great summer and a great pre-season, but today is the first official day, and it’s great to be back,” Prohm said. “I just hope we can carry over a lot of what we learn over the summer. Focus more on the defense, learn more about the guys. We just gotta get better each day. Just win the day and move on to the next.”

Junior guard Quincy Anderson, who transferred to Murray State from Minnesota State Mankato, spoke before practice. He said he’s excited to get to play with all these new people on the team.

“The newness of it all is what I’m most excited about,” Anderson said. “We’re all kind of excited to play and say, ‘This is official.’ I think we’re also ready. If we didn’t feel like we were ready, we wouldn’t be so eager to get out here.”

Sophomore guard Brian Moore Jr., a transfer from Northeastern Oklahoma A&M, also spoke before the practice about the start of the season. He said he’s just ready to get to work. 

“It’s exciting, man,” Moore said. “We’ve worked all summer to get here with 14 new guys, and we can finally see how we can perform together. The biggest thing Coach Prohm has said to us is just to buy in and accept whatever role we have. We may have been the main guy at our old school, but we gotta play for the name on the front of the jersey, not the back.”

Some players said it has felt like a family since they got to Murray State. Prohm said the team is focusing on getting comfortable and feeling like a family with each other.

“A coach I used to know said, ‘Recruit, retain, develop,’” Prohm said. “I think we’ve done a good job of that. These guys are a big part of our lives. …This is a special program and a special place. No program does what Murray State does, so I hope these guys truly feel like this is a family.”

Anderson said he’s loved Murray so far, and he loves the small town feel.

“I grew up in Wisconsin and went to school in Minnesota, so it’s definitely different,” Anderson said. “I’m used to living in those bigger cities, so to come to a small town like Murray, you can just feel that sense of family and togetherness and that’s something that I love. The people here have already shown me a ton of love.” 

Anderson also said the locker room feels like a home to him with how close he’s gotten to the team.

“It’s made things easier,” Anderson said. “I don’t feel as much pressure to be perfect. I’m just expected to be myself, and that’s something I’ve always been comfortable with, but in a small town, it’s just easier. It’s just alleviated some of the stress I felt coming here.”

Anderson, who played with NBA guard Tyreese Haliburton growing up, spoke on something new he’s learned about the sport since transferring to Murray State. He said he’s gained a lot of knowledge on the court thanks to the other guys he’s playing with.

“Playing more efficiently is something I’m always working toward,” Anderson said. “It was an adjustment, but learning to pass, score and move more efficiently is something new. …then a different level of grit on defense, but overall, I’ve learned that I just need to figure it out.”

Moore spoke about players who stood out during pickup games over the summer. He said everyone’s had their days, but there is one player he said no one will want to guard.

“Sure, everyone from Braxton Stacker to Jacobi Wood has had his days,” Moore said. “But one guy who’s really good is Kenny White. He came out of Tennessee Tech. He’s a six-foot-eight- inch guy who plays like a guard. That’s one guy you don’t wanna match up with.”

Moore, who grew up in Harlem, New York, spoke about his tattoos covering his right arm. When asked about them, he said it’s all a part of how he got to where he is.

“A lot of them hold a story,” Moore said. “One is about my friends from home, one of whom passed away in a shooting. I’ve got a New York tat, one for my area code, one for my grandmother, Lula, who passed away. They all mean something to me.”

Murray State’s first exhibition game takes place on Nov. 2, when the Racers play host to the Brescia University mascot. The team then travels to St. Louis, Missouri, to take on the Billikens of St. Louis University at time on Nov. 7.


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