Sitting out last season recovering from neck surgery wasn’t easy for USC linebacker Skai Moore. When doctors told Moore that he would miss the entire 2016 season it was a blow. He said if it wasn’t for a strong support staff from his family, teammates and coaches it would have been even worse. He managed to push through rehab and get healhty enough to return to the field, but then he had another decision to make. Where would he return? USC or the NFL?
Moore had more than enough on tape from his first three seasons to show NFL scouts and coming off a major injury the idea of trying to make the pro leap was a very real possibility for him. He didn’t make a final decision until the end of the season, “right around the Clemson game,” he said. Just like he did with his rehab from the injury, Moore leaned on his family, teammates and coaches to help him make the choice to return for his final season at USC.
Moore’s return is a huge boost for Will Muschamp’s defensive. His junior season is was the biggest, one might argue the only, play maker on a unit that was gashed most of the season. He had 110 tackles, two sacks and four interceptions. The Gamecocks only won three games that season but without Moore they almost certainly would have lost more. He had two of those four interceptions in the opener against North Carolina, both picks coming in the red zone. The Gamecocks held off the Tar Heels and handed them their only regular season loss.
Moore said the first week of spring practice was an adjustment period for him to get his legs back underneath him, but now he feels like he’s rounding back into form. That is news that no doubt excites Muschamp and Gamecock fans longing for a better defensive unit.
Check out what Skai Moore had to say after practice Wednesday: