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Jamal Murray wins SEC award; Defends Marcus Lee amid criticism of frontcourt

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Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Jamal Murray is a great guy on and off the court.

Just about anyone who watches college basketball knows the former by now after Murray just capped off one of the greatest months a Wildcat has ever had. He did so with a pair of big games last week that's helped net him the SEC co-Freshman of the Week award, the league announced Monday.

Murray opened the week with 23 points, four rebounds and a pair of blocks in a win over Alabama. He followed that with his third 30-point outing of the season with 33 points at Vanderbilt on 12-of-20 shooting and six made three-pointers. He also added a career-high-tying and team-high nine rebounds. With six made three-pointers, Murray broke the single-season freshman record for made three-pointers.

Unfortunately, the Vandy game was one the Cats would rather forget after they were thrashed in the second half by their Dores en route to a 74-62 loss, the second-worst defeat UK has suffered this season. It led to an onslaught of criticism towards UK's frontcourt for doing virtually nothing in the game.

That's what Marcus Lee was asked about several times after the game, but Murray would have none of it:

For a guy who just scored 33 points, more than half of his team's points, Murray had every right to be upset with his teammates for not doing more to help him. Instead, he defended Lee and said the frontcourt isn't an issue.