College basketball practices start Friday, but Gophers forward Jordan Murphy's thoughts have been divided between his family's safety through a major hurricane and getting ready for this season.
Murphy, a 6-foot-6 returning All-Big Ten performer, intensely followed the news of the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria in the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico last week.
His mother, Celia, is from St. Croix in the Virgin Islands. Murphy's uncle, aunt and their family still live there and had to leave their home for shelters to keep safe from the category 5 storm. The eye of the hurricane reportedly passed just 10 miles from St. Croix late Tuesday last week before eventually making landfall in Puerto Rico last Wednesday morning.
"My family is going through a lot currently just dealing with the damage and assessing what they have left, what of their lives they have left from their home," Murphy said.