By Erik Harris
CLAY – Backups are always one play away from stepping off the sideline and into the spotlight. The only question is, which ones are actually ready for the promotion?
Last Thursday night in Memphis, Tenn., former Clay-Chalkville standout Hayden Moore answered that question shortly after being called into duty for an injured Gunner Kiel.
Kiel, the University of Cincinnati’s starting signal caller, went down with a neck injury late in the opening quarter of a nationally televised game at Memphis. The Clay-Chalkville alumnus took it from there, throwing for a school-record 557 yards in a narrow 53-46 loss.
Moore will now make his first-career start against Miami tonight on ESPN. Bearcats’ head coach Tommy Tuberville announced that Kiel had not been medically cleared and that his freshman quarterback would get the start at home.
Miami (3-0) at Cincinnati (2-2) will air on ESPN tonight starting at 6:30 p.m.
Moore, fresh off a 31-of-53 night that went for 557 yards, four scores and two interceptions, shouldn’t be lacking confidence against one of the ACC’s best. He will have the luxury of passing against a Hurricane secondary that is missing safeties Jamal Carter and Deon Bush for the first half of play. Their absence is due to targeting penalties last week against Nebraska.
Follow Erik Harris on Twitter @jeharris2.