Murphy bamboozled Rory O’Carroll in the 35th minute, flicking the ball impudently over the head of the UCD and Dublin defender before arrowing over an outrageous point with the outside of his right foot.
It was another memorable score from Murphy, who had banged over some magnificent scores in the previous round against Queen’s University, Belfast.
It was Murphy’s solitary score from play yesterday but the towering full-forward won and netted a first half penalty, and placed Dublin’s Paul Flynn for DCU’s second goal.
The final scoreline flattered DCU slightly, as UCD had two players sent off in a four minute spell in the second half.
Mayo’s Kevin McLoughlin was dismissed for a second bookable offence in the 40th minute, before Laois man Donie Kingston received a straight red card from referee David Gough for an incident involving DCU’s Donie Smith.
The other main talking points were two penalties not given, and the one that was. UCD claimed that O’Carroll fouled Murphy outside the large parallelogram in the 22nd minute but Gough awarded the penalty. Murphy stepped up to find the net, although UCD goalkeeper Eoghan Keogh got strong hands to his shot. The impressive Flynn felt that he should have been awarded a penalty approaching half-time and UCD had definite claims when Paul Cahillane tumbled in the second half. But on both occasions, Gough was unconvinced.
When the dust settled, DCU could reflect on a job well done and they will meet the competition’s second favourites Dublin IT in the semi-finals at Athlone IT. It’s a repeat of last year’s quarter-final between the sides, won by DCU by 10 points. The suspicion is that the rematch will be much tighter but with Murphy in red-hot form, DCU will fancy their chances against anybody. “It was just one of those things that go for you sometimes,” he replied modestly when asked about his wonder point.
Of more concern to Murphy was the eligibility saga that ruled his Donegal teammate Michael Boyle and Cork’s Aidan Walsh out of this year’s Sigerson Cup.
“When did we stop people playing our own games? I understand if they put an age limit on it with the amount of years you’re allowed to play Sigerson but stopping players playing?
“We’re trying to encourage people to play Gaelic games, to stay in the country, get an education. They’re doing that and universities are providing them with a wee bit of support.
“Why would universities provide them with support from now on? But it’s done and dusted and I’m sure the two boys want to move on. Everyone wants to move on.”
Scorers for DCU: M Murphy 1-4 (1-0 pen, 0-3f), P Flynn 1-1, B Donnelly, D Smith, P Ryan, C McGuinness & C McGraynor 0-1 each.
Scorers for UCD: D Kingston 0-3 (1f), N Murray, N Kilroy & S Cadden 0-1 each.
DCU: J Farrelly (Cavan); W Lowry (Dublin), J Cooper (Dublin), C Boyle (Monaghan); C Daly (Roscommon), J Brady (Cavan), M Quinn (Longford); F O’Curraoin (Galway), P O’Hanlon (Monaghan); P Flynn (Dublin), C McGuinness (Monaghan), A McFadden (Donegal); D Smith (Roscommon), M Murphy (Donegal), P Ryan (Dublin).
Subs: M McCarthy (Dublin) for Ryan (h.t.), G Sweeney (Dublin) for McFadden (h.t.), B Donnelly (Louth) for O’Hanlon (40), C McGraynor (Wicklow) for Flynn (54), E Doherty (Donegal) for Quinn (59).
UCD: E Keogh (Laois); J Hayes (Cavan), R O’Carroll (Dublin), M Furlong (Wexford); L Keaney (Donegal), C Lenihan (Meath), D Drake (Mayo); J Heslin (Westmeath), C Dias (Dublin); N Murray (Cavan), D Larkin (Meath), N Kilroy (Roscommon); K McLoughlin (Mayo), P Cahillane (Laois), D Kingston (Laois).
Subs: R Basquel (Dublin) for Larkin (h.t.), S Cadden (Cavan) for Cahillane (48), C Boyle (Westmeath) for Kilroy (54).
Referee: David Gough (Meath)