Posted by Adam Jacobi
The NFL world is a little poorer today than it was yesterday, as longtime Vikings/Patriots WR (and Marshall alum) Randy Moss announced his retirement earlier. Moss was a free agent at the time, and from the sound of it, the situation in front of him was sufficiently dire that retirement seemed like the best option.
If his retirement is permanent (and not one of those Brett Favre annual retirements), that's a bummer. Moss is 34 now, which means he's lost a couple steps, but even still, he's one hell of a wideout, one who's able to embarrass an opposing cornerback here or there.
So let's look back at a time when Randy Moss' legs were still young and fresh. Oh, and instead of an NFL defense to face, let's pit him against, let's say, late-'90s Army. 3rd and 2 for Marshall at its own 10. What's the worst that can happen?
Oh. Ohhhh. Mach 2 Fireball Death Machine Randy Moss is the worst that can happen. For those keeping score at home, that's a juke, an even better juke, a hurdle, a stiff-arm, and then otherworldly speed, all in one play. And it wasn't even Moss' only insane TD of the day.
It's not enough to say that college football doesn't get guys like Randy Moss very often. There really hasn't been one since. The closest you could get was probably 2004 Braylon Edwards at Michigan, and while Edwards was making some sensational plays in the iconic 1 jersey for the Wolverines, well, he never came close to what Moss did there.
Of course, any discussion of Randy Moss' college career is incomplete without mentioning why it was it's no accident that Moss ended up at tiny Marshall and not a big-name program. Moss originally signed with Notre Dame, but got in a nasty fight during his senior year that ended in a felony charge -- and a denial of enrollment by the school. Moss instead enrolled at Florida State, but was ruled ineligible for his freshman year due to transfer rules. He then tested positive for marijuana during his probation for the aforementioned fight, earning him a dismissal from FSU. So while it's a shame his skills were only on display for Marshall, it was pretty much entirely Moss' fault.
That all said, Moss stayed out of trouble at Marshall, and excelled on the field as a result. For that, we've got that insane play to show for it, and a richer college football history as a whole. Happy trails, Mr. Moss.