WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) — It has been a memorable freshman season for Purdue Heisman Trophy candidate Rondale Moore.
On Wednesday, he received the Paul Hornung Award as the most versatile player in college football.
"It is an honor to win the Paul Hornung Award, and I appreciate the Louisville Sports Commission selecting me," Moore said. "Individual honors are nice, but football is a team game, and I want to thank my coaches and teammates for their support all season. I know I can get better and become a better all-around player."
Moore, a wide receiver, leads the nation with 103 receptions, the second-most in a season by a Big Ten player. Chris Daniels of Purdue holds the record with 121 in 1999. Moore leads the conference with 1,164 receiving yards (11th nationally and fourth in school history) and 12 receiving touchdowns (tied for seventh nationally and tied for fourth in school history) and ranks second with 2,048 all-purpose yards (fourth nationally and second in school history) and 13 total touchdowns (tied for 11th in school history). Moore boasts seven 100-yard receiving games, tied for the most in a season in Purdue annals.
The last Purdue player to lead the Big Ten in receptions was Keith Smith (91) in 2009, and the last to lead the country was running back Rodney Carter (98) in 1985. The only other Boilermaker to lead the country was tight end Dave Young (67) in 1980.
Moore has possessed the football 162 times and is averaging 12.6 yards per touch. He has 30 plays of 20 or more yards, including a 76-yard touchdown rush and a 70-yard scoring reception. Moore is the Boilermakers' third-leading rusher (18 carries for 203 yards, 11.3 average) and tops the team in kickoff returns (30 for 599 yards, 20.0 average) and punt returns (11 for 82 yards, 7.5 average).
"We are extremely proud of Rondale and want to thank the Paul Hornung Award and the Louisville Sports Commission for this tremendous honor," Purdue head coach Jeff Brohm said. "We knew Rondale was a special talent from the moment he first stepped on campus. Like Paul Hornung, Rondale is a threat in so many ways on the field and brings real excitement and electricity whenever he touches the ball."
Moore was a semifinalist for the Maxwell Award (nation's outstanding player) and the Biletnikoff Award (outstanding college football receiver).
Furthermore, Moore earned two major Big Ten Conference honors as he was named the Richter-Howard Receiver of the Year and the Thompson-Randle El Freshman of the Year.
Moore is the first Boilermaker to be recognized as the Big Ten's best receiver and the fifth to be selected the top freshman, joining quarterback Brian Fox (1988), quarterback Eric Hunter (1989), running back Corey Rogers (1991) and safety Stuart Schweigert (2000).
Moreover, Moore earned first-team All-Big Ten honors as a wide receiver by both the coaches and the media, becoming the first Purdue player at that position so honored since Smith in 2009. Moore was named first-team return specialist by the coaches and second-team by the media, as well. He earned Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors four times – following games against Northwestern, No. 23 Boston College, No. 2 Ohio State and Indiana.
In his first collegiate game, Moore set the Purdue game record with 313 all-purpose yards against Northwestern on Aug. 30. He had 79 rushing yards, 109 receiving yards (the first freshman with 100-plus in his debut) and 125 kickoff return yards.
Moore topped the previous mark of 312 all-purpose yards by Otis Armstrong in his last collegiate game against Indiana on Nov. 25, 1972. Moreover, Moore amassed his yardage total on merely 18 touches, while Armstrong needed 34. Vinny Sutherland had 306 all-purpose yards on only 15 touches against Central Michigan on Sept. 18, 1999.
Moore had a 76-yard rush in the first quarter, the longest by a Purdue player since Akeem Hunt reeled off an 82-yarder at Indiana on Nov. 29, 2014.