Tyler Moore is a football kid. He grew up in a football family. His dad played for the Huskers, and his cousin, Jay Moore, starred there as well. He knows football. He knows the game. But he also knows how to look at things a little differently than perhaps most recruits/commits you'll see.
When I asked him about the Big Ten and the move of Nebraska to the long-existing conference, he thought it would be good for Nebraska. But he thought it would be even better for the Big Ten. From where he's been looking, when the Big Ten does make it to the national title game, well, the results aren't great. Ohio State was the most recent member of the conference to play in the national title game, appearing in both the 2007 contest versus Florida and then in the 2008 national title game against LSU.
Both were humbling defeats dished out to the Buckeyes.
The argument has been that it's speed. It's speed. Speed, speed, speed. The South has it, the North doesn't, and the trend which has seen the SEC rise to power doesn't seem to be slowing down.
But one could argue that had Texas not lost their Heisman candidate quarterback in the first quarter of play against Alabama, there might not be so much emphasis on that argument as it pertains to the SEC region.
Tyler Moore has it figured out though. And he sees the addition of Nebraska as the key to the Big Ten's potential climb back to the top. "They don't have a championship game in the Big Ten. While everyone else is getting ready for an actual game, they are just going against each other," he said. "They have like over a month between actual games. I don't care who you are, that's going to make a difference."
Look at the results. The last five national champs have come from conferences with a league title game. It's a game which takes place around the end of the first week or slightly into the second week of December. Ohio State's year-end traditional match up with Michigan takes place around four to five days before the end of November.
It doesn't seem like a long time. But when you figure in practices allowed during those times before not one, but two games if you include the bowl, the Big Ten would almost always find themselves facing a team which was probably a little more battle tested for the game.
And let's face it, Michigan hasn't exactly been a world beater as of late. If your last regular season game is against a team which is struggling, while these teams in conference title games are facing someone probably ranked in the top 10, consider that just compounding the problem for whichever team might make it out of the Big Ten and qualify for the big game of the year.
That's something to think about.
When Moore heard about him committing to the Huskers it caught him off guard. "I was amazed. I mean, we already have Jamal Turner who is a real highly rated quarterback. And then to get Starling, that was something I didn't expect," Moore said.
As for Sterup, Moore thought that was a good pick up, and he's glad the Hastings St. Cecelia all-star chose football over basketball. "It's going to be an adjustment being that tall and just being able to stay low. But he's a solid player," Moore said. "I think he probably also saw the class we are putting together here, and I am sure he sees what we see down the road."
And then there's Facebook.
Seemingly the most popular medium on the planet right now when it comes to bringing people together, it has also become a forum for future Huskers. Tyler Moore, Ryne Reeves, Jamal Turner and recently added, Tevin Mitchell – all have something to say.
Most of it you really can't print.
But even with all the kids from states like Texas, Nebraska and Florida, Moore is surprised nobody is throwing down the smack for prep talent in their state. "Yeah, none of that yet. You know, the stuff about where the best players come from and all that. I haven't seen much of that," he said. "But there's about everything else, and it's great just to talk with the guys like that. It's like becoming friends with people who you never actually met, but will play with one day. So, it's cool."
As for Moore himself, he's trying to slim down to a svelte sub-300. Although a 5.07 40 he ran weighing around 305, shows that he's not lacking for pure speed. But hey, he is from Florida after all. He's just working out, suffering through the humidity of the Sunshine State and looking forward to a certain game in Lincoln.
You know the game.
It's the game that will make the official visit list for USC a few years ago, look paltry in comparison.
You know the game.
October 16, in Memorial, against the University of Texas.
"Once I saw the schedule and knew Texas was at home, and I knew I had only one official visit I could take, I knew that's the game I would want to see," Moore said. "I know people are looking at it as a revenge game. But I just think it's going to be a great game which will hopefully make up for that deal in the conference title game."
We'll let Tyler get back to his life, and we'll get back to our own. But always interesting perspective from a very savvy football mind for someone so young. The kid knows the game and he has a solid perspective about the conference situation for the new Big Ten down the road.