Moss vs. Moss
Written by Urban Mogul Life on November 8, 2010
BY: Paterno Jones
Moss grew up in Rand, West Virginia and attended high school at the now defunct DuPont High in Belle, West Virginia, where he lettered in football, basketball, baseball and track. On the football field, Moss led the DuPont Panthers to back-to-back state championships in 1992 and 1993. He was a star at wide receiver, but also played defensive back, returned kickoffs and punts, and was the teams kicker and punter. In 1994, he was honored as the West Virginia Football Player of the Year. Parade Magazine named him to their annual All-American high school football team and recently named him one of the 50 greatest high school football players of all time.
In addition to playing football at DuPont, Moss was twice named West Virginia Player of the Year in basketball (1993 & 1994), where he was a teammate of future NBA player Jason Williams.
As a sophomore in 1992, he ran for the track team and was the West Virginia state champion in the 100 and 200 meters. This was the only year he competed on the track team. He also played center field for the baseball team.
Freshman (redshirt) (1995)
In 1996, while serving his 30-day jail sentence in a work-release program from 1995, Moss tested positive for smoking marijuana, thus violating his probation, and was dismissed from Florida State. He served an additional 60 days in jail for the probation violation.
Ultimately, Moss transferred to Marshall University, about an hour’s drive from his home. Because Marshall was then a Division I-AA school, NCAA rules allowed him to transfer there without losing any further eligibility. In 1996, he set the NCAA Division I-AA records for most games with a touchdown catch in a season (14), most consecutive games with a touchdown catch (13), most touchdown passes caught in a season (28 – tying Jerry Rice‘s 1984 record), and most receiving yards gained by a freshman in a season (1709 on 78 catches), a record which still stands. Moss was also the leading kickoff returner in Division I-AA on the season, with 612 total yards and a 34.0 yard average. Marshall went undefeated and won the Division I-AA title in its last season before moving to Division I-A.
In the 1997 season, Marshall’s first in Division I-A, Moss and current Miami Dolphins quarterback Chad Pennington were the centerpiece of an explosive offense that led the Thundering Herd to the Mid-American Conference title. Moss caught 25 touchdown passes that season, at the time a Division I-A record, and was a first-team All-American.
The first game of the season saw Moss pick up right where he left off in 1996. Facing Army, Moss caught 5 balls for 186 yards and two touchdowns. One touchdown went for 79 yards in which Pennington lobbed the ball down the left sideline. Moss leaped over an Army defender to snag the ball out of the air at the 40 yard line while the safety crashed into his teammate knocking both men down. Moss galloped the last 50 yards untouched for the score. The other touchdown reception was his career long of 90 yards that came on a short screen pass on third down. Moss caught the ball on the right side of the field at his own 8 yard line, ran past 3 defenders in the middle of the field at the 15 yard line, hurdled two defenders coming from both sides of the left hash marks at the 25 yard line, then raced past the last defender at the 50 yard line before finally seeing daylight down the left sideline.
A week later, Moss posted his third career 200+ yard receiving game against Kent State. Two weeks after that was his fourth and final 200+ yard game in college, recording 13 catches for 205 yards and a Marshall single-game record of 5 touchdown receptions against Ball State.
In the 1997 Ford Motor City Bowl against Ole Miss, Moss added his 26th touchdown of the season on Marshall’s first offensive play from scrimmage. He streaked down the right sideline and caught an 80 yard touchdown pass from Pennington to tie the score at 7–7. NCAA rules at the time did not allow for statistics from bowl games to be combined with regular season stats, so the touchdown did not officially increase his season touchdown record. The two teams traded the lead several times in the fourth quarter before Ole Miss running back Deuce McAllister scored on a 1-yard touchdown run with :31 seconds to play giving them a 34–31 lead. Trying to pull out a last-second win, Pennington connected with Moss on a 40 yard pass on the final play of the game, but he was stripped of the ball as time expired. Moss finished the game with 6 receptions for 173 yards.
Moss finished his career at Marshall having scored at least one touchdown in all 28 games that he played. He won the Fred Biletnikoff Award as the nation’s leading wide receiver, and was a finalist for the 1997 Heisman Trophy (finishing fourth in the balloting, behind Ryan Leaf, Peyton Manning, and Charles Woodson, who won the award).
- Most games with a touchdown reception in a season – 12 (1997 – tied with Larry Fitzgerald in 2003)
Division 1-AA – Regular season
- Most games with a touchdown reception in a season – 11 (1996)
- Most consecutive games with a touchdown reception in a season – 11 (1996)
- Most receiving yards gained by a freshman in a season – 1073 (1996)
- Most touchdown receptions caught by a freshman in a season – 19 (1996 – record for all NCAA divisions)
Division 1-AA – Playoffs
- Most touchdown receptions in a single game – 4 (vs. Montana, Dec. 21, 1996)
- Most yards receiving in a single game – 288 (vs. Delaware, Nov. 30, 1996)
- Most touchdown receptions in a tournament – 9 (4 games in 1996)
- Most yards receiving in a tournament – 636 (4 games in 1996)
- Most touchdown receptions in a season – 23 (2007)
- Most touchdown receptions by a rookie in a season – 17 (1998)
- Most seasons with 17 or more touchdown receptions – 3 (1998, 2003, 2007)
- Most seasons with 16 or more touchdown receptions – 3 (1998, 2003, 2007)
- Most seasons with 11 or more touchdown receptions – 8 – tied with Jerry Rice
- Most seasons with 10 or more touchdown receptions – 9 – tied with Jerry Rice
- Most games in a season with at least 2 touchdown receptions – 8 (2007)
- Only player to have 1,600 receiving yards and 16 receiving touchdowns in a season (2003)
- Most yards receiving in a Pro Bowl game – 212 (2000)
- Most touchdowns scored in first 10 games with a new team – 16 (2007)
- Most 1,200+ yard receiving seasons to start a career – 6 (1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003)
- Moss has averaged at least one receiving touchdown per game played in four different seasons: 1998 (17 TDs in 16 games), 2003 (17 in 16), 2004 (13 in 13), and 2007 (23 in 16)
- At the end of the 2008 season, Moss averaged 12.3 receiving TDs per season
- Four 100+ yard games in his first four games with a new team in 2007
- Youngest player in NFL history to record his 100th receiving touchdown – (29 years and 235 days)
- Youngest player in NFL history to record his 120th receiving touchdown – (30 years, 313 days)
- Fastest player to reach 5,000 career receiving yards – 59 games (broke record of 61 games by Jerry Rice)
- Highest career yards per catch average for any player with 900+ receptions – 15.6 yards per reception
- Youngest player to have 3 touchdown receptions in a game (21 years, 286 days)
Randy ratio is the term that best describes Randy. He wants the ball because he is the best wide receiver to ever play the game. If the food isn’t good, he will let you know. If the coach sucks, he will be the first critic. If the quaterback can’t get him the ball, God forbid. Bottomline the Titans were very understanding to his needs as one of the greats. All the greats have an air about them. Do you get the Randy who has the tight twisted fruitpops for men in the escalade for the after practice shot or do you get the randy who is devoted to his craft. He is his own worst enemy. Moss vs. Moss the saga continues………………………….