As a former college assistant coach, Louis Clyburn has seen how this scenario has played out.
A multi-dimensional athlete comes to a football program and can play on both sides of the ball. The offensive coaches want the young man for their side of the ball. But the head coach is a former defensive coordinator. Guess who wins that battle?
Warren Moseley will find out the answer to that question when he arrives at Limestone College this summer. While being told he will play offense for the first-year Saints’ program, Limestone head coach Bobby James is the former defensive coordinator at Wingate. Either way, it should be an interesting summer and fall for Moseley in the Upstate after he signed a National Letter of Intent with Limestone on Wednesday.
During the course of his recruitment, the 6-foot-1, 215-pound Moseley was told he would be used as a tight end or, play the H-back position. He is comfortable either way.
“They run the pro-I offense and they want me to run the ball a little bit and, maybe, catch it some,” Moseley said following his Wednesday afternoon signing ceremony. “They said I have good hands. So I have to be ready for anything like that when I get up there.”
This past season, while playing defensive end for North Central, Moseley led the Knights with 86 tackles with 16 of those coming behind the line of scrimmage. He also registered four sacks and forced a dozen quarterback hurries while causing two fumbles. Defensive numbers like that, said NC head coach Louis Clyburn, will lead James wanting to put Moseley on his side of the ball.
“I told Warren’s dad that the head coach was the old defensive coordinator at Wingate when I was the offensive coordinator at Lenoir-Rhyne,” Clyburn said. “I know this, that when a head coach sees a kid who can help the defense, usually the boss wins.
“I just know the tenacity that Warren has and the effort that he plays with when he’s on the field. It’s not that it doesn’t come out on offense, but you know how that comes out when he’s on defense. I wouldn’t be surprised if the head coach doesn’t start lobbying for Warren to come over there and play some defense.
“Warren has a lot of options as to where he can play on the field.”
As for how Moseley decided on Limestone as the place where the High School Sports Report AA All-State selection will spend his college years, he said the recruiting process heated up some two months ago. “The coach called me up and said he talked to my coach and said that I looked good out there and that they would like to see me playing for them in the future,” he said. “I looked up their academics and said that I really liked the school.”
From there, Moseley traveled to Gaffney to visit the school and its new football and athletic facilities. He did not stop there, however. During his official visit, he checked out the dorms, the weight room, the classrooms, met with the coaching staff and read about the curriculum. It was the perfect fit for him.
“It’s close to home and it has a good academic program,” he said of his decision. “They also want me to come in and be able to play. I knew this would probably be the place for me to go. I can play, right off, and it has what I want in academics.”
The NCAA Division II Saints will kick off their inaugural season when Wingate comes to town on Sept. 6.
As for Moseley and playing on offense, Clyburn said Limestone watch a 2012 NC tape when Moseley played the fullback position and was utilized in that role as well as playing tight end. This past season, he was second on the Knights with 17 catches for 264 yards and five touchdowns. Add to that his defensive statistics and his playing on special teams and kicking, and you have a player who rarely saw the sidelines.
Playing on just one side of the football in college, Moseley said, will be a welcomed change.
“It will be a lot easier than not having to be on the field every play,” he said with a smile. “Being able to come to the sidelines and rest a little bit before going back out to compete will be a little easier. It should be a lot of fun. I can be fully rested and be able to make more plays.”
Moseley said the biggest challenge for him, on the field, will be getting used to the speed of the college game and lining up against bigger and stronger players than those he went up against in high school. While he is preparing himself for that challenge, he said his first responsibility will be to his classroom work.
“I really just have to keep my grades up and get stronger so that I can compete with other people,” he said. “I really want to keep my academics up so that I can get my degree. It’s going to be harder in college than in high school.”
Clyburn said Moseley is a player who wears his heart on his sleeve and is just the type of student-athlete college coaches are looking for when they go out recruiting.
“Warren really has come a long way as a player; his heart and soul are in it,” said the fifth-year NC head coach.
“Ultimately, when you look at kids that end up playing college football, those are the ones who stick out. Rarely do you see guys who are kind of halfway in and are doing it for different reasons but who don’t truly love it. There’s nothing wrong with that, but Warren Moseley is one of those kids who plays because he truly loves the game. He would hurt if he didn’t get a chance to go to football practice in the fall. Those are the kids who will become good college football players.
“I think Limestone is getting a heck of a player. He can do a lot of things for them. I know they’re excited because they don’t have a lot of kids on campus right now. They’re a young football program.”
Saying that he is happy for Moseley and his family, Clyburn said his former standout is the type of young man a new program like Limestone can build on.
“He’s an unbelievable kid,” Clyburn said of Moseley. “I tell the coaches who come into my office that when you bring a bad apple into your program and, it’s going to happen, you have to answer to the head coach and members of the staff as to why you didn’t uncover these glitches or personality flaws. You dig deep when you’re a college recruiter to see if there are any flaws with these young men.
“I tell them that I would never try to cover up any of that with a young man. But with Warren Moseley, I’d let him carry my wallet for a month and I’d let him babysit my kids. He’s that type of young man. His parents have done a great job raising him and he knows right from wrong. He will do the Kershaw County School District, North Central and the North Central community very proud.”