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You've Got To Get Up Early In The Moore...ning
Courtesy: Stanford Athletics  
Release: 11/17/2000

Nov. 17, 2000

Casey Moore
Position: Fullback
Height: 6-2
Weight: 240
Year: Sophomore
Hometown:Largo, Florida
High School: St. Petersburg Catholic HS
Major: Public Policy

They say the early bird gets the worm. For Stanford sophomore fullback Casey Moore, it couldn't be more true. Upon first look, the sleepy-eyed, slow-talking and easy-going Moore seems to fit the bill as a laid-back Floridian. By his own admission, he claims to love sleep and rest.

Moore was enjoying a relaxing summer in Florida prior to his freshman year of high school in 1994. He had played football in the seventh grade but after being "stuck at left guard or something" his interest in high school football was pretty low. He did have a couple of cousins going into their senior year and playing football at St. Petersburg Catholic High School. However, Casey was much more into basketball and baseball ... and sleep ... that summer.

That all began to change during a summer basketball camp. One of the coaches at the camp was also the junior varsity football coach at the high school Casey would soon be entering. He began to develop an interest in having Casey join the football team.

Moore was intrigued with the possibility of playing football, but there was one big problem. Practice started at 8:00 a.m. And for a young teenager enjoying his summer in Florida, that was indeed a bit of a problem.

Still, the coach decided to call. Practice started and Casey continued to enjoy his early-morning sleep. The coach called again, but still Casey decided that sleep might be a bit more fun than his memories of "being stuck at left guard or something."

However, after missing the first week of practice, he changed his mind. Four years later, he became a Division I collegiate football player at Stanford.

A lot took place in the transition from sleepy mornings to intense Division I football at Stanford. Although Moore was not heavily recruited in high school, he caught the eye of Phil Zacharias when the Cardinal assistant was on a recruiting trip in nearby Orlando to watch another potential fullback.

Career Highlights:
Has been Stanford's starting fullback for the last 20 consecutive games ... Has the longest run in the history of the Big Game, taking off for a 94-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter of the 1999 contest versus California (11/20/99) as he finished with 116 yards on six carries ... Ranks third on the team this season with 208 yards on 46 carries and is averaging a team-high 4.5 yards per rush ... Has scored four career rushing touchdowns ... Also has a career total of 18 catches for 199 yards and two touchdowns ... Finished the 1999 campaign with 190 yard rushing on 23 carries for an average of 8.3 yards per rush.

Casey gives high school coach Dan Mancuso much of the credit for getting him noticed.

"He works really hard," says Moore about his prep coach who took over the head coaching reigns at St. Petersburg Catholic during Casey's sophomore year. "Anybody that wants to play in college, he'll try to find a spot for you. He pushes all the players really hard to recruiters."

The word Mancuso spread about Casey's abilities got to Orlando and Zacharias decided to have a look. He liked what he saw and by the time the following year rolled around Casey found himself in a Cardinal uniform. His freshman season was spent as a redshirt, like most first-year players under Stanford head coach Tyrone Willingham.

However, Casey would soon be noticed. By the third game of his redshirt freshman season, he became the team's starter at fullback. The rest, as they say, is history. Moore has never relinquished his starting spot as he has answered the bell in 20 consecutive games for the Cardinal and shows no signs of letting go.

It takes a special person to be a fullback. Moore spent most of last season leading the way as a blocking back for the likes of halfbacks Brian Allen and Kerry Carter, picking up just 23 carries along the way. However, one of those 23 carries was perhaps one of the most memorable in Stanford history.

Backed up on its own six-yard line and holding a precarious 21-13 early in the fourth quarter of last year's Big Game versus California, the Cardinal called Moore's number on a quick hitting play that was primarily designed to help the Cardinal out of its deep hole. Moore hit the hole quickly and just kept going, 94 yards later Moore had the longest run in Big Game history and the second longest run ever by a Cardinal running back. Stanford had a 28-13 lead and sealed its first trip to the Rose Bowl since 1971.

"You wonder if anybody will break it," says Moore about the 94-yarder. "It's pretty cool. As a fullback, you don't expect to hold too many records."

Still, Moore takes much more pride in his blocking than his running.

"You have to like blocking," says Moore about the mentality of a fullback. "You have to like going out there and banging heads with people. It's great when you can make a good block and then you see the halfback running down the field. That run last year was just one play out of the whole game. Our first job is to be a blocking back. In order to have a good game, you have to have a decent game blocking. That's the first thing I think about. The runs and the catches are just an added bonus."

The fact that Moore is even playing collegiate football at all has been a bonus for him.

"I love it," states Moore about the game. "It's definitely a part of who I am. I think it's a great sport for life in general. There is so many ups and downs, so much hard work. It is so tied to everything you do. Football really teaches you a lot about how to preserve and be strong."

Football also makes you get up in the morning. Even six years after those phone calls by his high school junior varsity coach, the early morning wakeup calls are not over.

Stanford head coach Tyrone Willingham doesn't mind putting the Cardinal through an early morning workout here and there. However, this time it doesn 't start at 8:00 a.m. In fact, the Cardinal is usually almost done by that time after starting off-season conditioning workouts on Saturdays at 6:30 in the morning.

"And that's supposed to be our off-season," says Moore.

by Kyle McRae



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