ISU football: Moore healthy, ready to show Cyclones who he is
AMES — One week.
That is the length of former Waterloo West star Devon Moore’s first season as an Iowa State football player.
Moore, the first recruit to commit to Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell, was participating in a non-contact drill a year ago when he suffered an ACL injury.
Just like that, year one was done.
“That was tough,” Moore said Tuesday during the Cyclones’ annual media day.
A year later, Moore is ready to get back into the game.
The 6-foot-4, 215-pound left-handed quarterback looks leaner and bigger as he tries to move his name up the depth chart.
Right now, Moore sits behind returning starter Kyle Kempt and redshirt sophomore Zeb Noland. Then there are Moore and three true freshmen — Re-al Mitchell, Brett Clark and Brock Purdy.
Moore poured himself into rehab. In some ways, it took him back to his junior year in high school when he broke a leg six games into West’s season and had to spend an entire year rehabbing that injury. He returned for his senior season and threw for 2,331 yards and 29 touchdowns.
“I feel real good,” Moore said. “I feel like I’m back to 100 percent. When you have the best training staff in the country, there is no way you can’t come back 100 percent healthy and ready to go.”
Moore was healthy enough to participate in some non-contact spring drills, including many 7-on-7 reps where he got to work on timing with the Cyclones’ receiving group.
One of the teammates Moore was able to lean on was Noland, who suffered the same injury two seasons ago during preseason camp.
“The guys were real good at keeping me involved, making sure I wasn’t done,” Moore said. “It is a real tight-knit group.”
Now, however, he is cleared for full participation and Campbell said that is what he needs more than anything.
“He attacked the off-season and got himself to a point where his health is good, and now it’s how do I go play the game of football and evolve as a football player?
“You see he has evolved as an athlete (with his leaner and more muscular physique). Now it is how to evolve as a player and what are those things that it takes to be successful.”
Moore said he did not waste a day during last season or in the off season whether that be on the sidelines inside the quarterback huddle learning, being mentally challenged by the other quarterbacks in the film room or attacking his rehab.
“I was making sure I wasn’t losing a day, made sure I was getting better every day no matter what it was I was doing,” Moore said.
Campbell says now is the time for Moore to attack the next step.
“We know he has great arm strength. We know he has great ability,” Campbell said. “Now it is putting all those other tangibles together and how you do that is reps and he needs to be out on the field and getting those reps.
“That is what I’m excited about for Devon.”