Back in 2002, Ohio State University’s Chris Gamble was a collegiate football sensation. The future NFL cornerback played defense, offense and special teams for the eventual Bowl Championship Series national champion Buckeyes.
Gamble was a threat to make a play and break the game open on literally every Ohio State unit.
Cameron Moore was the Chris Gamble of the Allentown High School football team in 2018.
The tall, long senior played defensive back, wide receiver and kick/punt returner for the Redbirds, and he was a threat to make a play and break the game open on all three units.
During the fall campaign, Moore ran back an interception for a touchdown, caught a score and even took a kickoff to the house. But Moore did his best work on defense, intercepting two passes, recovering two fumbles and forcing a fumble.
The senior’s breakout campaign earned him a nod to the 41st annual Phil Simms North-South All-Star Football Classic on June 24 at Kean University. Moore played for the South All-Stars in their 24-23 loss to the North All-Stars on that warm evening in Union.
The South holds a 20-19-2 in the all-time series in a game that attracts some of the top graduated seniors from New Jersey.
“These are good players,” said Simms, the New York Giants legend who sponsors the game, during the first quarter on June 24. “It’s probably the fastest the game has been. The two teams overall their speed is the best I’ve seen.”
Moore was on the field at Kean’s Alumni Stadium as Simms was talking, and it would not have been a shock if the Super Bowl XXI MVP was referring to Allentown’s version of Chris Gamble. The Allentown senior has always had electric speed and athleticism.
He just had to realize that himself, said former Allentown football coach Jay Graber, who led the Redbirds in 2018 but took the head job at Matawan Regional High School after the season. Once Moore realized his potential, he knew that all he needed to do was set his mind toward achieving success.
Moore did just that after struggling in his first year as a starter at Allentown, as a junior in 2017.
“He had an ok year,” Graber said. “But he’s the kind of kid that’s talented.”
Over the summer of 2018, Moore committed himself to the weight room and a running program, and it paid off the following fall.
“He was our best defensive back,” Graber said. “He had a good year.”
Moore deserved his spot in the Simms Classic, and it meant a lot to him.
“All these players are great,” he said. “It feels good to be a part of it all.”
“And playing at Allentown was a good experience,” Moore added. “I learned that you have to be disciplined.”
Moore will have to be disciplined at his next stop, too. The senior is moving up to East Coast Prep, a postgraduate football program in Great Barrington, Mass., this summer.
East Coast Prep coach Dick Bell is known for helping his players earn collegiate scholarships. Bell has sent 127 players to Division 1 programs in the last six years.
“Hopefully trying to get a D1 offer,” Moore said. “I want to learn every defensive back position.”