- High School: Clay-Chalkville; Pinson, Alabama
- Position: Quarterback
- Height: 6'3"
- Weight: 193
- Consensus Rank*: 82 (***)
* As determined by 24/7 sports composite algorithm which combines and weights the rankings of 24/7, Rivals, Scout and ESPN to come up with one number.
In the eyes of a lot of Bearcat fans Hayden Moore is the forgotten man among the quarterbacks. Gunner Kiel is probably the Bearcats quarterback this year, even if Tommy Tuberville won't say it. Gunner will stick around for a couple of years* before taking his talents to the NFL. At which point four star QB Ross Trail will ascend to the starting job where he will reign for a three years or so before he too moves on to the NFL. That is how the situation is mapped mentally for UC fans. Overlooked in that little bit of game theory is the fact that Hayden Moore can play ball.
* No one wants to glance this far ahead, but if Gunner stays to play his senior season he will be doing so while breaking in a brand new receiver rotation. Every receiver of note for the Bearcats is (probably) coming back for 2015, but then they are graduating. It wouldn't be a shock for Gunner to go with them.
Hayden Moore might not have the prototypical size or the huge arm that Trail has, but he has a lot of tools to work with. For Moore it all starts with his pocket presence. He has a knack for eluding rushers and creating space in the pocket. He does not resemble Tony Pike in any way, but his feel for the pocket is Pikelike*. He slithers his way out of sure tackles and into space where he can throw darts. When he gets out of the pocket he can do real damage with his legs, there are more than a few instances where he puts defenders on their rears with a quick shake. That's not a requirement to play quarterback, but its nice to have.
As a passer Moore is solid, there is a flaw to his throwing motion. On intermediate routes his throwing motion is short, concise and accurate. Its on the deeper throws where a hitch appears as he often drops the ball to or below shoulder level which elongates his motion and takes more time. My guess is that on the longer throws he had trouble getting velocity on the ball and compensates by putting more of his weight behind the throw. I would say that the change had little effect on his accuracy. At the high school level it didn't affect Moore, but its something that he will need to clean up while at Cincinnati. My guess is that as he gets stronger the need for the longer motion will dissipate.
Like almost everyone else in this class Moore is heading for a redshirt this year. Beyond that he will have another year (hopefully two) to watch and learn from Gunner Kiel before competing for the starting job with Ross Trail.