Central linebacker Caleb Moore brings ‘thunder every play’ _lowres

Caleb Moore, Central High linebacker

Central gets “more” from its defensive leader, who also plays special teams and has scored four touchdowns as a tailback in the team’s Rhino Package.

Central coach Sid Edwards said senior linebacker Caleb Moore is a physical force and leader of the Wildcats defense.

“Caleb Moore is a really tough guy,” Edwards said. “He’s extremely smart and understands and studies the game. He’s a hard hitter and does a good job from a technique standpoint. He brings the thunder every play.”

Moore has 24 solo tackles and 13 assists on the season with a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. He plays both inside linebacker spots in Central’s 4-2-5 defense.

Central (4-2, 1-0 in District 4-5A) travels to Scotlandville (5-1, 0-1) in a key game Friday night.

Moore (6-foot, 215 pounds) is a three-year defensive starter. He started as a 235-pound defensive tackle as a sophomore, then defensive end as a junior and has moved to linebacker, his favorite position this year. He had 65 solo tackles, 34 assists, seven sacks, two interceptions, six forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries in 2014. Moore earned the coveted Iron Cat award over the summer when his teammates voted him the hardest worker in the weight room.

“I like playing linebacker because I’m more involved in every play,” Moore said. “I love studying film and a lot of times I know what type of play the team is going to run based on their formation and tendencies. I try to be at the right place and the right time.”

The other linebacker is two-year starter Andrew Harris.

“Andrew and Caleb are good friends and have good chemistry as linebackers,” Edwards said.

Edwards admits that Central is undersized along the defensive line with an average weight of 175 pounds.

“We’re a scrappy group of mighty mites on defense,” Edwards said. “Our defensive coordinator Ken Hilton has done a good job of moving guys around up front to mix up our looks. We feel good about our secondary. Our linebacker play is the glue of the unit that holds everything together.”

Scotlandville has beaten Central the past two seasons and has another athletic team.

“We know we’ll have our hands full with Scotlandville,” Edwards said. “They’re solid and well coached. This is the toughest our district has been in the last 10 years. Every school has their best team.”

“Scotlandville is a fast and athletic bunch,” said Moore, who has scored on half of his eight carries. “Playing them is our biggest challenge of the season. We want to keep their offense guessing with our defense.

“We’ve got four games left, and we control our destiny. We hated not making the playoffs last year. We’re going to play with intensity.”