Texas Longhorns junior wide receiver Joshua Moore is no longer with the team and plans on entering the NCAA transfer portal, head coach Steve Sarkisian announced during his Monday press conference.
“We wish him the best of luck,” said Sarkisian.
The news of Moore’s departure comes five days after a reported altercation in practice with Sarkisian. The Longhorns head coach initially downplayed the incident, but it clearly precipitated Moore’s departure.
“He’s getting coached and that’s what we do. I think sometimes people get this misconception that because I’m a ‘player’s coach,’ that we don’t coach hard. We have a very demanding staff, we coach hard, we believe in discipline, we believe in doing things the right way, and when things aren’t going that way, we coach our guys. and so whichever one you guys felt like it was important to report that, that’s that’s your bad, not ours,” Sarkisian said on Thursday.
Moore has appeared in all nine games this season with five starts. Against Iowa State, he didn’t see the field until the second quarter and immediately produced the longest offensive play for Texas — a 24-yard catch and run on 3rd and 7. As the offense stalled, however, Moore only made one more reception for eight yards.
Despite ranking tied for second on the team in receptions and third in receiving yardage, Moore has been inconsistent this season with 24 catches for 265 yards and three touchdowns — he had four catches for 70 yards and two touchdowns against Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl and five catches for 64 yards and a touchdown against Baylor, but hasn’t had more than 32 receiving yards in any of the other seven games. Against Arkansas in Fayetteville, Moore did not record a catch.
Moore has also had disciplinary issues in the past — in 2019, he was suspended for the season after an arrest on a gun charge in downtown Austin. He arrived in Austin from Yoakum as a member of the 2018 recruiting class ranked as the No. 96 player nationally and the No. 19 wide receiver, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.
After recruiting misses and injuries to junior Jordan Whittington (clavicle) and redshirt freshman Troy Omeire (knee), the Longhorns lack quality depth at the wide receiver position. Freshman Xavier Worthy is an emerging star, but the next-leading wide receiver is junior Marcus Washington with 11 catches for 153 yards. Washington did not record a reception against the Cyclones.
The official backup to Moore is freshman Casey Cain, who has not made a catch yet for the Longhorns. More likely to play against Kansas are players like redshirt freshman Kelvontay Dixon, junior Al’Vonte Woodard, and junior Kai Money.