Purdue’s Rondale Moore Named 2018 Paul Hornung Award Winner
Louisville, Ky. – December 5, 2018 – Purdue true freshman standout slot receiver/return specialist Rondale Moore, who set a school record for all-purpose yards in his first college game on his way to Big Ten Receiver and Freshman of the Year honors, was named winner of the ninth annual Paul Hornung Award presented by Texas Roadhouse. The Louisville Sports Commission and Paul Hornung present the award to the most versatile player in major college football.
Moore and his family will be honored on March 7, 2019, at the annual Paul Hornung Award Banquet presented by Jewish Hospital Sports Medicine at the Galt House Hotel in downtown Louisville.
Following his record 313-all-purpose yards and two touchdowns in the Boilermakers’ opener against Northwestern, Moore quickly became the target of opponents’ defensive game plans. Yet he went on to lead the nation with 103 catches, is fourth in the nation with 2,048 all-purpose yards and leads all Power Five receivers in yards after catch with 882. He leads the Big Ten in receiving yards (1,164), receiving touchdowns (12) and kickoff return yards (599), and recorded nine games with more than 100 all-purpose yards: Northwestern (313), Missouri (195), Boston College (151), Nebraska (163), Illinois (112), Ohio State (252), Minnesota (183), Wisconsin (174) and Indiana (154).
Moore made a statement to the college football world with 252-all-purpose yards and two scores in Purdue’s upset of then no. 2 Ohio State, and touched the ball four different ways and scored twice in Purdue’s upset of Boston College. He had 12 catches in a regular-season ending victory over IU, including touchdowns of 56 and 33 yards, and fielded an onside kick to seal the win and make Purdue bowl eligible.
“We are extremely proud of Rondale and want to thank the Paul Hornung Award and the Louisville Sports Commission for this tremendous honor,” said Purdue Head Coach Jeff Brohm. “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 a real excitement and electricity whenever he touches the ball.”
Moore was chosen as the Paul Hornung Award winner from among five finalists by a 17-member national selection committee comprised of sports journalists, coaches and retired NFL players; online fan voting accounted for the 18th vote. All votes were independently tabulated by regional accounting firm Dean Dorton, one of the largest accounting and advisory firms in Kentucky, with offices in Louisville and Lexington.
“It is an honor to win the Paul Hornung Award, and I appreciate the members of the Selection Committee for choosing 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.”
A sure-hands receiver and elusive runner with breakaway speed, Moore is given high marks by the Big Ten coaches who named him the Thompson-Randle El Freshman of the Year, Richter-Howard Receiver of the Year and first team all-conference on offense and special teams.
Last year as a senior at Louisville’s Trinity High School, Moore was named the Paul Hornung / High School Award winner by the Louisville Quarterback Club, an honor that goes to the state’s best football player.
“It’s rare to see a true freshman make such an impact on games,” Paul Hornung said. “We got to know Rondale when he was in high school, and it’s great to see that his skills and positive attitude quickly transferred to the college level at Purdue.”
The other 2018 Paul Hornung Award finalists were: Marcus Green (Louisiana-Monroe), KJ Hamler (Penn State), N’Keal Harry (Arizona State) and Connor Heyward (Michigan State).
Previous Paul Hornung Award winners by year:
- 2017: Saquon Barkley of Penn State won the award as an electrifying All-American running back who lined up at slot and wildcat quarterback, and returned kicks and punts;
- 2016: Jabrill Peppers of Michigan won the award by playing 15 different positions on defense, offense and special teams, and earning first team All-America at linebacker;
- 2015: Christian McCaffrey of Stanford won the award after breaking the NCAA record for all-purpose yards, finishing with 3,864;
- 2014: Shaq Thompson of Washington won the award as a two-way player, earning first team All-American honors at linebacker and finishing as the Husky’s second-leading rusher at tailback;
- 2013: Odell Beckham Jr. of LSU won the award after finishing the season ranked second in the nation and first in the Southeastern Conference with 2,222 all-purpose yards and 185.2 average yards per game;
- 2012: Tavon Austin of West Virginia won the award as one of two players in the nation with more than 500 yards in three different categories (rushing, receiving and kick returns);
- 2011: Brandon Boykin of Georgia won the award after excelling on defense, offense and special teams; and
- 2010: Owen Marecic of Stanford won the inaugural Paul Hornung Award as a two-way starter and All Pac-10 performer at fullback and linebacker.