From the courtroom to the hard court

TRU law professor brings lesson plan to basketball practice

Ted Murray – basketball coach and law school prof. (TRU Athletics)

Ted Murray – basketball coach and law school prof. (TRU Athletics)

Ted Murray is a busy man. The first-year sessional law professor at TRU splits his time between the three things that he enjoys most: the law, teaching, and coaching basketball.

Murray was made to coach. A self-described “tiny little guy in high school that graduated at 102 lbs,” he soon realized that playing might not be the most successful way to partake in the sport that he loved.

After spending his time as a hybrid team manager/assistant coach in high school, Murray went on to Simon Fraser University (SFU) and after four years spent as a team manager there he became an assistant coach, working under current TRU head coach Scott Clark.

“Ted is is an extremely intelligent guy. I think he understands the game greatly, he always wants to learn more about the game,” Clark said.

Leaving Clark and SFU, Murray returned to his alma mater of North Delta to become both a teacher and the head basketball coach at the high school from 1999 to 2007.

Murray decided to go back to law school in 2008 and after passing the BAR exam, a desire to escape the financial rigours of downtown Vancouver as well as to reconnect with Clark brought him to Kamloops earlier this year.

“I knew one of the things I would do up here was volunteer with Scott coaching. When I was considering where to move to out of Vancouver, the fact that Scott was up here was really a big part.” Murray said.

Teaching employment law and insurance law this semester, Murray said that there is some crossover between teaching and coaching.

“Community building is very important in both of those fields. All the technical stuff is fine and great but you can’t get anywhere with that unless you have your players and your students on board.”

Murray said that his role with the WolfPack is to spend time with the younger players on the team, making sure that they continue to improve in each and every practice.

“Scott’s in his 21st year as a head coach at this level. He knows exactly what he wants to do in every technical aspect of the game. One of the things that I try to bring to my classroom and the gym is that I’m a pretty positive, enthusiastic person,” Murray said.

Clark feels as though it is the life experiences that Murray brings to the table that makes him effective as a coach.

“The best part is that he can teach. He can take complex skills and complex schemes and simplify it, break it down and teach it so that it can be learned.”

TRU is currently first place in the explorer division of Canada West basketball with a record of 12 wins and 2 losses, and while Murray is happy with how the team is playing, he is even more happy with the balance he has achieved.

“I really enjoy the law, I really enjoy coaching and I really enjoy teaching, and now I’m getting to do all three of those things in different interesting ways.”

One Response

  1. Andrew Luesley Feb. 6, 2016