Nov. 29, 2000
NEW ORLEANS - Tulane freshman running back Mewelde Moore, the second-leading rusher in Conference USA in 2000, Wednesday was named the league's Freshman of the Year in a vote by all nine league coaches and media from each C-USA city. Moore, a 6-1, 195-pound back from Baton Rouge, is the first Tulane freshman to ever win the award.
Moore easily set the Tulane freshman rushing record and had the fourth-best single season rushing total in school history. His total of 890 yards on 174 carries was the most by a Tulane running back since the 1970 season. He averaged 89 yards per game and 5.1 per carry while playing in 10 games for the Green Wave. His per game average was the second-highest total in C-USA and was second among all freshmen nationally. He helped Tulane to a 6-5 record on the season and the No. 7 total offense in the nation.
"Mewelde Moore epitomizes the true student-athlete," said Tulane Head Coach Chris Scelfo. "The impact he made on our team had a direct result on our team's success on offense. The toughness he showed playing through injury will help him develop even further in the future."
Moore, who was also named a second team Freshman All-American by The Sporting News, had five 100-yard rushing games, including three consecutive versus East Carolina, SMU and Cincinnati in September. He suffered a high ankle sprain in the Cincinnati contest and missed part of that game and was slowed throughout October by the injury, although he missed only one complete game. He rebounded to rush for 118 yards on 22 carries with a rushing TD versus Houston and had 99 yards on 18 carries in the Navy game. He recorded his fifth 100-yard game in the Wave's season finale against Memphis.
An effective receiver, Moore ranked fourth on the team in receiving with 33 catches for 350 yards. He had a 74-yard touchdown catch and run versus Army to record the Wave's longest touchdown play of the year and totalled 1,240 all-purpose yards on the season.
Moore made news early in Tulane's season when he signed to play professional baseball for the San Diego Padres while continuing to play football for the Green Wave. The fourth-round draft choice, who effectively became a "walk-on" player for Tulane, will play baseball with the Padres organization during the summers.