Racers knew what Payne could do before the season


WPSD Sports

MURRAY, KY -- To say Murray State's Cameron Payne has had a decent freshman season would be a massive understatement. But for those who have spent time with him, his success comes as no surprise.

"I knew early on that he would contribute a lot," said junior Jarvis Williams.

"He is a hard worker," Dexter Fields said. "He is willing to get better and has spent a lot of time in the gym. He did that a lot before the season began."

But Payne himself never expected to play the way he has so far.

"It has been a shock how far I have come along," Payne said. "Especially in such a short time."

Coaches around the OVC know Payne is a player they have to stop. Belmont head coach Rick Byrd, who recruited Payne out of high school, said that he never expected the guard to play as well as he has this early.

"It always feels good to hear another coach say something good about you," said Payne. "It gives me more confidence."

Payne has led the Racers in scoring all season long, but it is another stat that has his teammates loving to be on the court with him.

"It keeps you in your seat when he is driving because there is no telling where the ball is coming from," Williams said about Payne's passing ability. "If you are not paying attention then you are going to get hit dead in the face."

"When I get someone involved with a pass, then they score, it is like I scored," Payne said. "I love when everyone is happy.

And if the next few years are anything like the first has been, Murray State fans have a lot to be happy about.

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