Purdue won’t be without Rondale Moore after all in 2020.
The star wide receiver said Thursday that he would play when the Big Ten starts its season on Oct. 24. Moore had previously said that he was skipping the season to prepare for the NFL draft.
Moore made his announcement on ESPN’s “College Football Live.” He said that the Big Ten’s safety protocols and daily rapid testing starting on Sept. 30 were a huge factor in his decision to return.
Moore is one of the most dynamic playmakers in the Big Ten. He burst onto the scene as a freshman in 2018 with 114 catches for 1,258 yards and 12 receiving touchdowns along with 21 carries for 213 yards and two rushing touchdowns as Purdue went to a bowl game.
Moore was hampered by injuries in his sophomore season. He played in just four games but still had 29 catches for 387 yards and two touchdowns.
He’s the second star wide receiver to say he’s coming back to the Big Ten now that the conference is going to play football this fall. Minnesota’s Rashod Bateman previously said that he wanted to come back and play in 2020. Both Bateman and Moore are possible first-round picks in the 2021 NFL draft.
The Big Ten has returned a lot of talent that had opted out since the conference announced its Oct. 24 return. Ohio State OL Wyatt Davis and DB Shaun Wade are both coming back to school and Michigan OL Jalen Mayfield said he was going to return.
Players who opted out of the season and signed with agents are likely expected to be able to play in the fall given the extenuating circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic. The NCAA has already granted all fall sports athletes an extra year of eligibility even if they play this season or not.
With Moore back, Purdue is set to bring back as many as 17 starters in 2020. The Boilermakers begin the season at home against Iowa in a month.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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