A legend steps down!
BOONE — Jerry Moore, the winingest football coach in Appalachian State University and Southern Conference history, will not return said ASU Athletic Director Charlie Cobb on Sunday.
“Following the end of last season (2011), Coach Moore and I sat down and we came to the decision, with the approval of Dr. (Kenneth E.) Peacock (Appalachian State University chancellor) that the 2012 season would be the last season of his tenure as head coach,” Cobb said. “Coach Moore didn’t want to make that decision public before or during the season because, in his typical humble nature, he wanted all of the focus to be on his student-athletes, winning a 10th Southern Conference championship and returning to the postseason for the eighth-straight year. In a fitting sendoff, all of those goals were accomplished. For thousands of Mountaineer fans, including myself, seeing him carried off the field by his players while clutching the Southern Conference championship trophy following the win over Furman (Nov. 10) was the highlight of the season.
“Words cannot express the gratitude that the Appalachian family has and that I have personally for Coach and Margaret (Moore),” Cobb continued. “The number of lives that Coach and Margaret have impacted in a positive way in their 24 years in the High Country is innumerable. Coach Moore is legend at Appalachian State and in college football and we are planning to celebrate his legacy appropriately and abundantly in the future.”
Moore compiled a 215-87 record in his 24 seasons at Appalachian State, including 10 Southern Conference championships, 18 postseason appearances and an unprecedented three-straight NCAA Division I FCS/I-AA national titles (2005-07). In 31 years as a head coach, Moore was 242-135-2, which is good for 15th all-time among NCAA Division I coaches. This year alone, Moore passed coaching legends Bo Schembechler (234 victories), Billy Joe (237) and Woody Hayes (238) on the all-time wins list.
While he enjoyed success at nearly every stop of his 51-year coaching career, his 24 seasons at Appalachian State cemented Moore’s standing as one of college football’s all-time great mentors.
He led the Mountaineers to three-consecutive national championships from 2005-07, making Appalachian the first program to ever win three-straight titles at the FCS level and the first Division I institution (FCS or FBS) to accomplish the feat in 61 years.
Appalachian became the first institution from the state of North Carolina to ever win an NCAA football championship at any level when it defeated Northern Iowa, 21-16, in the 2005 national-title game, a feat it repeated with wins over Massachusetts (28-17) and Delaware (49-21) in the 2006 and 2007 NCAA Division I-AA Football Championships.
Moore also led the Mountaineers to seven SoCon championships in the last eight years (2005-10, ‘12), making Appalachian State only the second program to achieve that feat since the venerable league began crowning a champion in 1933. Appalachian won 26-straight conference games — the second-longest run of league victories in SoCon history and the longest in 51 years — from 2007-10.
Additionally, Appalachian State became a household name when Moore led his troops to perhaps the biggest and most prominent upset in college football history, a 34-32 triumphover the University of Michigan in the 2007 season opener.
The victory over Michigan, college football’s all-time winningest program which came into the contest ranked No. 5 in the Associated Press Top 25 poll, marked the first time that an FCS team ever toppled a nationally ranked FBS opponent. The victory also compelled the AP to change its long-standing history of only accepting votes for FBS teams in its Top 25 poll, which allowed the Mountaineers to become the first FCS team to ever receive votes in the poll, which they did on three occasions in 2007.
Moore is no stranger to individual awards, as he is a three-time American Football Coaches Association Coach of the Year (2005, ‘06, ‘07) and the only Division I (FCS or FBS) mentor in the 77-year history of the award to win it three years in a row.
He also won the 2006 Eddie Robinson Award (National Coach of the Year) from The Sports Network, is a six-time AFCA Regional Coach of the Year (1994, ‘95, 2005, ‘06, ‘08, ‘09, ‘10) and a record eight-time SoCon Coach of the Year (1991, ‘94, ‘95, 2005, ‘06, ‘08, ‘09, ‘10). In 2009, he was named the Liberty Mutual FCS Coach of the Year, an award that included $50,000 for Moore’s favorite charities and $20,000 for the Appalachian State Alumni Association scholarship fund.
“During his 24 years of loyal service to Appalachian State University, Coach Moore’s contribution to the institution is far greater than his success on the field,” Peacock said. “He touched the lives of many young people and made life better for them. He will be missed but never forgotten at Appalachian State.”
Assistant head coach Scott Satterfield will serve as Appalachian State’s interim head coach while a nationwide search is conducted for the 20th head coach in program history.