The Wolverine

November 2020

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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44 THE WOLVERINE NOVEMBER 2020 BY EJ HOLLAND C layton (Ohio) Northmont fin- ished the regular season with an undefeated record and captured an outright Greater Western Ohio Con- ference championship. A big reason for that was three- star 2021 Michigan safety commit Rod Moore, who dominated on the defensive side of the ball and saw extended time at wide receiver later in the year due to injuries. "It feels great to be undefeated," Moore said. "We just came together from the start. We had a bump in the road against Springfield, but we pulled through. "At first, I was a little nervous about playing offense because I played it in middle school and ninth grade, then went straight defense. When they threw me in there, I knew I had to produce. It came easy from there. I just want to help the team." Moore committed to Michigan in May over offers from Iowa, Ken- tucky, Michigan State, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Wisconsin and a hand- ful of other major programs. Since then, Moore saw teammate and good friend Markus Allen back out of his verbal pledge to U-M. However, Allen's decommitment has had no effect on Moore. He remains completely locked in with Michigan. "I'm still a Wolverine," Moore said. "Nothing is changing. No colleges have really tried to steal me from Michigan. All I can say is that I'm still solid. I have a great relationship with Coach [Bob] Shoop, and our commit group is like a big family. "Every month, we get on a Zoom call with all the recruits, and it just feels like we're all coming together." Moore's relationship with Michi- gan's first-year safeties coach is play- ing a big role in his firm commit- ment. The two are in constant contact and have formed a bond that extends beyond football. "Coach Shoop always stays in con- tact with me — he probably called me during practice," Moore joked. "When he first recruited me, he told me he really liked me at safety and went over coverages. But we haven't talked much about that. It's just more personal. I really like him." Moore added that he's excited to see what Michigan can do this season and will be paying close attention to the defensive scheme. "I hope we can go see a game in person," he said. "But I just want to see how their defense is. Now that I'm coming to Michigan, I just want to really look hard into how they op- erate and run their defense." R i v a l s . c o m r a n k s t h e 5 - 11 , 170-pound Moore as the No. 16 pros- pect in Ohio and the No. 32 safety in the country. XAVIER WORTHY RECEIVES ALL-AMERICAN JERSEY Rivals100 Fresno (Calif.) Central wide receiver and Michigan com- mit Xavier Worthy received his All- American jersey via a virtual presen- tation in September. Worthy, one of the most explosive players in America, will take part in the game in San Antonio Jan. 9. The contest showcases some of the top high school football players on a yearly basis and is broadcast live on NBC. "It was pretty good leading up to [getting the jersey]," Worthy said. "My mom was excited. My uncle was excited. He wanted me to play in this game, so it was an exciting moment for him. Not really having any train- ers and just getting it all on my own is exciting, just knowing the legacy behind it. "Some people in Fresno played in it, but not a lot of people from Fresno are known like that. Getting a chance to put on for Fresno and making a name for myself is huge." Worthy will have the opportunity to compete against and with other top recruits nationally, including future teammates like Rivals100 quarterback J.J. McCarthy, Rivals100 linebacker Junior Colson, Rivals250 defensive lineman Quintin Somer- ville and elite kicker/punter Tommy Doman. "Getting an early bond with them is going to be great," Worthy said. "Really, I just want to connect with J.J. because he's going to be the quar- terback there. It should be a really fun week." Soon after the game, Worthy will begin his journey at Michigan. He committed to the Wolverines in July over offers from Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, LSU, Oregon, Penn State, USC, Washington and a slew of other major programs. Despite never visiting and the dead period being extended through the end of this calendar year, Worthy   MICHIGAN RECRUITING Rod Moore Remains Solid, Wins League Title The three-star Moore helped Clayton (Ohio) Northmont win its conference title after an unde- feated regular season. PHOTO BY EJ HOLLAND

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