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Notre Dame Football Recruiting

Coach | 2023 Notre Dame QB Target Dante Moore "Gifted Mentally"

March 24, 2021
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As the offensive coordinator at Martin Luther King High School in Detroit, Terel Patrick has the weapons to make his job simple, but he sees his responsibility as greater than scoring touchdowns or winning games.

That’s been on display in how he calls games with 2023 Michigan quarterback Dante Moore‍ behind center.

“If you look at his freshman tape, I would say about 80 percent of his completions were between the hashes,” says Patrick. “For a young quarterback, you want to keep everything on the numbers and make the reads very simple, but he was able to read defenses and make throws and make high-quality throws in between the hashes. We don't baby him.”

Patrick acknowledges he fought the urge to keep everything vanilla and decided early on to remove the handcuffs.

“It's my responsibility that when he gets to college, reading coverages isn't new; running multiple concepts, whether it's pro concepts, spread concepts, taking snaps under center, sprint out aren't new,” the coach says. “I want Dante to have a high acumen and have a high level of understanding of all of those different concepts once he steps foot on campus.

“I owe that to him as a coach to put him in those different positions. I think that's what led to a lot of the colleges taking interest because they see this kid doing things that they do in their offense. He's not just throwing deep balls to the greatest athletes outside on the numbers. This kid is really running an offense.”

Patrick laughs, “And it would be easy because I've got Division-I kids on the outside.”

According to Patrick, Moore arrived in high school as a “wiry” 6-foot-2, 150-pounder, but has since grown an inch and added about 50 pounds.

“He has some stature and he can make every throw on the field,” says Patrick. “He has more than adequate arm strength, but it's the touch and the windows that he's able to make completions in.”

Moore already has dozens of offers from schools like Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State, Auburn, Tennessee, Ole Miss, Arizona State and Oregon among several others.

Notre Dame joined the mix when it extended a scholarship offer on St. Patrick’s Day, which is when Patrick talked about why the Irish were such an attractive option.

“He's a national prospect because he's gifted mentally,” says Patrick. “Before you even take to the field, his work ethic and his willingness. He wants to be an NFL quarterback. He wants to be a high school All-American. He wants to lead a college to a national championship. These are all things that he wants to do.

“That's fine because a lot of kids want to do those things, but Dante understands the work that it takes in order to achieve those things. And he puts that work into action. So I think that's really what separates him.”

If anything, the King staff has to make sure Moore isn’t trying to do too much.

“The thing that we probably have to work on with Dante is balance; that he's not overconsumed from wanting to be great and working,” says Patrick. “Every now and then, you force the kid, 'Hey step away from football for a couple days and go be a kid.'”

His teammates see the work the youngster puts in.

“Dante started as a freshman and led a team to a state title appearance as a 14-year-old with multiple Division-I kids on that team who I consider really good leaders,” says Patrick. “By the end of that year, it was something that I've never seen before in all my years coaching high school football,  a lot of those guys deferred to Dante as a leader.

“He was well-respected and the reason that took place is because of the work. You can't deny the work that you see and you can't deny the results that you see.

“He's a special kid.”

 
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