The Times West Virginian

WVU Sports

October 6, 2011

Former WVU, Monongah star Marbury reflects on life

MORGANTOWN — Sometime less than an hour after freshman Dustin Garrison had rushed for 291 yards against Bowling Green in his first collegiate start for West Virginia University, someone asked him if he knew who Kerry Marbury was.

“Naw,” said Garrison, not at all surprisingly, considering he was born in Louisiana just 19 years ago and went to high school in Texas, while Marbury was a local hero from a long-gone era, his claim to fame being that he had held the WVU single-game rushing record at that same 291 yards for 33 years until Kay-Jay Harris came along and broke it in 2004 with a 337-yard outburst against East Carolina.

In fact, after Harris had shattered Marbury’s record, he reached him on the phone.

According to his memory when reached this week at Fairmont State, where he teaches, Marbury relates the conversation as going like this:

“I’m sorry, Mr. Marbury, that I broke your record.”

“Kay-Jay, congratulations. Break the rest of them. I’m trying to fade into oblivion.”

But we’re not going to let that happen, so for Garrison and all the other youngsters who don’t know the tale of Kerry Marbury, the time has come to bring the Kerry Marbury story back to light, for it carries lessons that go far, far beyond the game of football and show how fickle fame can be, how misguided one’s dreams may become and how life is, in the end, what you make it.

Marbury sees self in Garrison

Let it be known that Marbury watched as Garrison burst upon the public awareness, stepping out of the obscurity of a football backup onto the highlight reels of ESPN. He watched and he marveled, for in many ways he saw some of himself in Garrison.

Marbury, in his day, was a water bug of a running back, blessed with 9.6 speed in the 100, which was run in yards, not meters, in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He was small, listed at 5-10 and 180, which meant he was shorter and lighter than that.

“I may have been way ahead of my time in those days because I was a lot faster than a lot of those people,” Marbury said.

But he didn’t make his runs against the kind of athletes that Garrison, who is listed at 5-8 and 175, faces in today’s Division I football.

“It was just amazing to see him make the moves and the runs he made at his size because now football players are bigger, stronger and faster,” Marbury said.

Of course, Marbury didn’t have the kind of offensive linemen blocking for him that Garrison has.

“We didn’t have the linemen that they do now. I think all the time if we had had the linemen they have now I may have stayed my senior year,” he said, only half joking.

Text Only
WVU Sports
  • Bussie looks forward to WNBA

    On Tuesday, the weather turned cold, the wind blew and amongst the raindrops that fell a few snowflakes fluttered quietly to Earth.
    It was as if it was a celebration of Asya Bussie being drafted on Monday night by the Minnesota Lynx, champions of the WNBA, with the third selection of the second round, the 15th overall pick of the draft.

    April 16, 2014

  • WVU’s Harlee named Big 12 Scholar-Athlete

    The Big 12 Conference announced its Scholar-Athlete of the Year recipients for the 2014 winter sport season, and West Virginia University senior Jess Harlee earns the honor for women’s basketball.
    Harlee was selected as the award winner based on a vote of each respective sport’s head coaching group, with coaches not permitted to vote for their own student-athletes.

    April 16, 2014

  • Gyorko, Padres agree to extension

    Jedd Gyorko, who hasn’t hit much of anything with a .178 start on this season, hit the jackpot on Monday, signing a six-year contract extension with the San Diego Padres for $35 million with a one-year club option at $13 million.

    April 15, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN- Spring game showed defense has improved

    From Dana Holgorsen’s viewpoint, which was standing right behind the offense, West Virginia’s Gold-Blue Spring Game on Saturday was a rousing success for it showed very little of what the Mountaineers will be in this coming season, probably not even showcasing the man who will direct the offense in the quarterback position.

    April 15, 2014

  • WVU signs guard; Adrian arrested for DUI

    There was something good and something bad for West Virginia men’s basketball coach Bob Huggins this past weekend as Kansas junior college player Tarik Phillip committed to play for the Mountaineers but rising sophomore Nathan Adrian was charged with Under 21 DUI after he was stopped at 1:20 a.m. Sunday for an expired registration sticker.

    April 15, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN- Most plays good, some not so good in Gold-Blue scrimmage

    There appeared to be a fine mixture of plays, most good with some not so good, in last Saturday’s West Virginia University’s Gold-Blue football scrimmage.

    April 15, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN- Garrison still proving he can carry the ball

    The running back raves from the West Virginia coaching this spring have been directly mostly toward Wendell Smallwood, and rest assured he earned every one of them with his versatility, but it was a reborn running back who well may have taken the biggest jump up the depth chart.

    April 14, 2014

  • WVU baseball drops seventh straight game

    One’s athletic skills are tested on a daily basis but every so often other aspects of an athlete’s makeup are tested, often far more important aspects in the game of life.

    April 14, 2014

  • Gold-Blue Game answers few questions at quarterback

    Dana Holgorsen finds himself in a quarterback quandary.
    He’s looking to have one quarterback and has five of them as spring practice ends, and nothing about the spring session has done anything to straighten out the situation.

    April 13, 2014

  • Moore ‘back at home’ under center

    There are a couple of ways to look at what Logan Moore did this spring after being moved back to quarterback and given a chance to compete for what is a wide open job, as wide open at the end of the spring as it was coming in.
    The first is to say that he didn’t wow Dana Holgorsen to the point that he’s willing to say he’s the leader going into summer drills, but that would be shortsighted considering from where Moore came.

    April 13, 2014

Featured Ads
WVU Sports Highlights
NDN Sports
House Ads
NCAA Breaking News
NCAA Photos