GENEVA, NE – Riley Moses qualified for state wrestling in both 2017 and ’18, placing 3rd in Class C during his most recent appearance.
That’s when his size and physicality was put on display for everyone, including the Nebraska Football coaching staff, to see.
“That’s when Riley’s size and physicality really got noticed and put on display,” Fillmore Central football coach Mitchell Lockhart said.
That was in February.
By Sept. 24, Moses took an unofficial visit to Lincoln. He was verbally committed by Sept. 25, and signed his letter of intent on Wednesday in front of a hoard of friends, family, teammates and coaches in the Fillmore Central wrestling room.
He’ll become the first Panther alumni to go straight from Geneva to the Husker Football program.
“It’s a huge relief,” Moses said. “It’s amazing to not have to worry about it anymore. It’s all over and done with. This community has been so great, and has shown so much support to me.”
Moses’ athletic ability on the wrestling mat and the football field caught many schools’ attention. By early fall, the 285-pounder had raked in scholarship offers from Concordia, UNK, Wayne State and Southwest Minnesota State.
He also held a preferred walk-on offer from South Dakota State. Once Nebraska was in the picture, the decision was all but made.
“Once the new staff got there, that’s really when I started getting extremely serious and saying ‘I want to play football in college,'” Moses said. “I tried to do everything in my power I could to put myself in the best position to get this opportunity, and I feel like (Nebraska) is always where I wanted to be. I just wanted to be in Lincoln.”
Moses will report on May 13 before starting classes in the fall. He plans to major in elementary education.
Before his commitment, Moses attended summer camps at UNK, Lindenwood, William Jewell, South Dakota State and Nebraska. He took part in the Huskers’ big man camp, which coincided with the first Friday Night Lights camp in June.
Most every school recruited Moses as an offensive lineman, with the exception of UNK. Moses will play wherever he’s needed, but as of now, it sounds like he’ll start working with the O-line.
“In talking with (offensive line) coach Greg Austin, it sound like I’ll play center and guard,” Moses said.
“That’s really what he wanted to focus in on,” Lockhart agreed. “That’s really where his skill level is.”
As a left guard, Moses led his team with 67 pancake blocks this past season. As a defensive end, he led the Panthers with 67 total tackles, including 14 tackles for loss and three sacks. He also picked up one fumble and blocked two kicks.
The Panthers’ football team finished 2018 with a 1-8 record. Fillmore Central never finished better than 4-5 in Moses’ four years, but that never dampened his spirits. To Lockhart, Moses has always possessed the tools necessary to succeed in football and in life.
“Riley is really the type of work ethic kid from the Midwest they were looking for to bring back the walk-on program,” Lockhart said. “A kid that’s ready to go to work everyday with a good attitude and has a good skillset and a good strength level to build back the program they’re looking at.”
Full interview with Riley Moses:
You can follow Tommy on Twitter @Tommy_NCN.
Just a little while ago: @fcpantherfb LG/DE Riley Moses (@littlemoses70) signs his letter for the #Huskers. Moses is one of 12 known walk-on commits for the Big Red. Verbally committed since late September. The 285-pounder placed 3rd at state wrestling this past year. pic.twitter.com/jFBEbRtP1f
— Tommy Rezac (@Tommy_NCN) December 19, 2018
His name: Riley Moses (@littlemoses70)
His position: Offensive Line
— Nebraska Football (@HuskerFBNation) December 19, 2018