There wasn’t much for Army fans to be happy about on Saturday, after the Black Knights lost 24-10 on the road to then-ranked No. 14 Cincinnati.
Army’s offense scored zero touchdowns, and was just 3-of-15 on converting third and fourth downs.
But Jabari Moore played one heck of a game. There was no questioning the effort of the 5-foot-11 sophomore from Hoover, Alabama.
For his tenacious work and play-making abilities, he takes home the C.I.C. MVP of the Week award from this here blog.
It was Moore who actually gave Army its only touchdown and only lead of the day.
On the third play from scrimmage — an option run by Cincinnati out of the shotgun — Moore busted the design up by swatting down a pitch from Cincy’s Desmond Ridder. Moore continued to rely on his instincts and scooped the ball up. He outran Ridder and housed the fumble for a 41-yard touchdown.
It was the second score of Moore’s collegiate career.
That was Jabari Moore for Army, who isn't even listed on the pregame depth chart.— Pat Forde (@ByPatForde) September 26, 2020
“We had a lot of defensive installs for the quick game and the option plays like that,” Moore said after the game. “So, when I see the pitch man, I triggered and the ball showed up.”
Moore kept haunting Ridder, intercepting his third-and-nine pass attempt on the Bearcats’ third drive of the game. It was Moore’s first career interception. Unfortunately, Army failed to capitalize on that turnover.
“I was just blessed to be in-position. It was Cover 3. It was a mis-thrown ball and I was just in-position to make the play,” Moore said. “I missed two games because a situation came up. It was my fault. I was just glad to get out there and play with my brothers. It was great. I obviously want to make plays. I just wanted to help the team as much as I could.”
In all, Moore finished the game with two solo tackles — one of which was for a loss — a forced fumble, a fumble recovery, an interception, a pass breakup and, of course, that touchdown.
A defensive back, he played in 13 games last season, logging 13 tackles and a fumble recovery.
Moore was a two-star recruit coming out of Hoover High School and had other offers from Air Force, Navy, Liberty, Troy and a host of FCS schools from the Ivy League, SoCon and HBCU ranks. Wisconsin also expressed some interest.
Cincinnati was the first game Moore had played in this season for Army. With how he performed, we should expect him to get more playing time.