Tuesday, August 26, 2014

2014 Player Spotlights: Josh Moore

Olathe North's Josh Moore.
Josh Moore
Olathe North

Position(s): Tight End/Defensive End
Height: 6-foot-5
Weight: 255 lbs.
Year: Senior
Film: Hudl

Player Comparisons
Christian Ballard, Lawrence Free State (2004-2006)

The Skinny
Moore's an interesting character. He's loathed by his opponents, adored by college coaches and recruitniks, and to this point, you could comfortably label him as either an underachiever, or a player who hasn't yet grasped his own potential. The label probably depends on the party.

If you want to know who's led the Sunflower League in trash talking the past two seasons, look no further than Moore. If you want to know which player in the league committed to Ohio State over offers from Auburn, Florida State, and Oklahoma, among others, look no further than Moore.

The enigmatic tight end was practically shunned by the league's coaches (on paper) as a sophomore, not earning even honorable mention all-league honors despite being the league's most gifted combination of size and athleticism. Of course, those attributes only counted when Moore wanted to make them count, which didn't seem like every game. In his junior season Moore stepped it up, catching 17 passes for 370 yards and two touchdowns as a tight end and recording 51 tackles, including 13 for loss, as a defensive end. And yet, the expectations remain that he's much more gifted than even those numbers, and he should be able to take it to the next level as a senior.

Truth be told, Moore is a carbon copy of former Free State and NFL alum, Christian Ballard. Ballard faced almost identical criticisms and praises during his tenure with the Firebirds, but it didn't stop schools like Georgia, Oklahoma and Michigan from offering. He ended up at Iowa where he was an All-Big Ten selection before he landed in the NFL with the Minnesota Vikings. Then last year he famously became one of  the first players in NFL history to quit the league because it "wasn't fun for him."

Moore is an insanely talented player, playing on what will be an insanely loaded Olathe North roster. He's also one of the most intriguing players to keep an eye on this fall, for more than just his on-the-field performance. His efforts this offseason and in fall camp also suggest he's turned the corner, and could very well be a near-impossible force for opponents to contend with this fall.

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