PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT: Junior wide receiver Joshua Moore prepares to throw the ball to his teammate during football practice. Moore practices almost daily alongside coaches and teammates and has dedicated himself to the sport for nearly 12 years. Photo by Sadie Corbin
By: Erica Zuber
The college football world, while a dream of many, is an experience only a select few are able to attain. The 6’4 standout junior wide receiver Joshua Moore has proved to be unlike the majority, collecting an impressive array of collegiate offers by his sophomore year. Between balancing his academics and football training, as well as making time for friends and family, this star player is continuing to excel on his path to success.
Moore found his start in the sport when he was only four years old. He returned to the field his freshman year after the COVID-19 pandemic momentarily halted his training and trained alongside his coaches to improve and enhance his skills as a wide receiver. After years of commitment, Moore’s effort has paid off in a remarkable way. With a total of thirty two D1 offers, he only continues to grow as both an athlete and student.
“He had to learn how to take on a lot of this stuff, and he’s done a very good job with it,” said football coach Brian McCartney. “He’s worked his tail off to achieve what his goal is. You see him put that work in and you can see it now that he’s dominated everybody and anybody that comes around him.”
Football has been Moore’s main focus for the majority of his life, and he has viewed it as a way to support his family and pursue his dream. On the field, he is dedicated to keeping the team united and pushing his teammates to do their best. His teammates find him to be a motivator and encouraging to those around him.
“He is uplifting, and he motivates all of us to do better,” said teammate Maurice Andrews. “And he is hardworking, and a big competition. He catches really well.”
Aside from Moore’s leadership qualities, his size, agility and unique ability to catch the ball in traffic along with a 40-time of 4.5 are some tangible factors that have kept college football programs interested. Six games into the 2023 football season, Moore has 390 yards receiving on 23 receptions and 5 touchdowns. After visiting multiple universities and training alongside some of their players, his talent has not gone unnoticed.
“The first D1 offer was in our college tour in June of 2022,” said McCartney. “We went to Georgia Tech, JJ threw a 40-yard ball to him, and he out-jumped 3 guys and caught it. A Georgia tech coach evaluated him there and gave him an offer 2 days later. When we were in Tennessee, he went off for 200 and some yards against a 3-time state champion from Tennessee, and Vanderbilt offered him the next day. Then in the month of December, it just opened up, everybody was offering.”
Maintaining his GPA with almost daily football practices and matches brings some challenges, but Moore has found ways to manage this hectic schedule. He finds value in time management and uses a strict daily agenda to stay on track. His parents encourage him to stay focused on his academics, and he keeps his college goals in mind as his motivation. This level of dedication is what has helped Moore receive offers from colleges including University of Miami, Florida State University, and Clemson University.
“My parents make sure I stay on top of my grades, because I am a student before I am an athlete. Colleges look at grades first. Before they look at what type of player you are, they look at your grades and your character,” said Moore. “You have to stay focused and disciplined.”
Moore plans to take football further past the collegiate stage and into the spotlight of the National Football League (NFL). He aims to additionally obtain a business degree during the time that he plays NCAA football in college. After dedicating almost twelve years of his life to the sport, Moore’s long list of D1 offers prove that his dreams are well within reach.
“The sky is the limit for him,” said McCartney. “He is one of the top receivers in the county. If he keeps working hard like this, he’ll go to one of the top programs, and maybe the NFL. I think every school will be here in December and January. ”