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Ahmad Rashād

Template:If empty
Rashād in January 2009
No. 28, 27
Position: Wide receiver
Personal information
Date of birth: (1949-11-19) November 19, 1949 (age 70)
Place of birth: Portland, Oregon, U.S.
Career information
College: Oregon
NFL draft: 1972 / Round: 1 / Pick: 4
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career Template:If empty statistics
Receptions: 495
Receiving yards: 6,831
Touchdowns: 44
Stats at
Ahmad Rashād
Born Robert Earl Moore, Jr.
(1949-11-19) November 19, 1949 (age 70)
Portland, Oregon, U.S.
Years active 1984-present
Spouse(s) Deidre Waters (m. 1969–71)
Matilda Johnson (m. 1976–79)
Phylicia Rashād (m. 1985–2001)
Sale Johnson (m. 2007–13)

Ahmad Rashād (born Robert Earl Moore on November 19, 1949) is an American sportscaster (mostly with NBC Sports) and former professional football player. He was the fourth overall selection of the 1972 NFL Draft, taken by the St. Louis Cardinals.

An All-American running back and wide receiver from Oregon known as Bobby Moore, Rashād was converted back to wide receiver while with the Cardinals, where he played for two seasons. He then played for the Buffalo Bills (1974), and most notably, the Minnesota Vikings (1976–1982), where he earned four Pro Bowl selections from 1978 to 1981.

Early life

Born Robert Earl Moore in Portland, Oregon, he played high school football in Tacoma, Washington. Rashād graduated from Mount Tahoma High School[1] and accepted an athletic scholarship to the University of Oregon in Eugene. He played football for the Ducks under head coach Jerry Frei, and became a member of Omega Psi Phi fraternity.

During his junior year in college, Rashād had legal issues in Portland; charged with a felony in November 1970,[2][3][4] he pleaded guilty to a reduced charge, a misdemeanor, in early 1971.[5] Moore majored in elementary education at Oregon.[6]

Football career

At Oregon, Rashād played wide receiver as a sophomore in 1969; then was moved to running back where he was an All-American in 1971 — in the same backfield with quarterback Dan Fouts.[1] Rashād was named to the College Football Hall of Fame on May 9, 2007.[7]

Rashād was the fourth player selected in the 1972 NFL Draft,[6] taken by the St. Louis Cardinals.[8] He made the UPI all-rookie team in 1972,[9] but second-year head coach Bob Hollway was fired after a 4-9-1 season. Don Coryell was the new head coach in 1973, and Rashād was traded after that season to the Buffalo Bills for backup quarterback Dennis Shaw.[10] In Buffalo, he roomed on the road with O.J. Simpson in 1974, but missed the 1975 season after a knee injury in the final pre-season game.[11]

Rashād was in the training camp of the expansion Seattle Seahawks, then was traded days before the start of the 1976 regular season, sent to the Minnesota Vikings for a future draft pick.[12] He originally failed the Vikings' physical, but was kept on the team due to the actions of quarterback Fran Tarkenton.[13] The Vikings made it back to the Super Bowl that season, their last appearance through 2014.

During his pro football career, Rashād caught 495 passes for 6,831 yards and 44 touchdowns, while also rushing for 52 yards. The standout catch of his career came in a December 1980 game against the Cleveland Browns. Vikings quarterback Tommy Kramer threw a Hail Mary pass to Rashād that resulted in a come-from-behind 28-23 victory and a Central Division title for the Vikings. This became known as the Miracle Catch. Rashād also has the distinction of the longest play from scrimmage that didn't score a touchdown: 98 yards in a 1972 game against the Rams.

Rashād replaced the same receiver, John Gilliam, in both St. Louis and Minnesota.

Broadcasting and television career

After his football career, he covered NFL, NBA, Major League Baseball[14] televised contests as a studio anchor and game reporter for NBC and ABC, as well as hosting NBA Inside Stuff. He also has hosted the video-clip show Real TV in 2000, the reality show Celebrity Mole, the game show Caesars Challenge along with co-host Dan Doherty, and NBA Access with Ahmad Rashad on the ABC network. He starred in an episode of Monsters. Rashād has also guest starred on several TV shows, mainly ones that starred his then-wife Phylicia. He used to interview long-time friend Michael Jordan frequently while he was at NBC. In early 2013, he became a member of panel on the daily talk-show Morning Drive on the Golf Channel, but left that summer.

Personal life

In 1972 Rashād converted from Pentecostalism to a small sect, United Submitters International which has unorthodox Islamic views.[15] He legally adopted his current name, which means "admirable one led to truth" in Arabic, a year later. The name change was not well received by many Cardinals fans.[13][16] His last name comes from his former mentor, Rashad Khalifa,[17] founder of the Submitters, who was assassinated in 1990. Rashād explained to a reporter in 1981 that his religious views were never akin to those of the Nation of Islam, or so-called "Black Muslims." He explained, "As far as I was concerned the Black Muslims were a racist sect, the same to me as the Ku Klux Klan, or anything that was exclusive to one race."[18]

Rashād has been married and divorced four times. In 1969, he married his first wife Deidre Waters. They had a daughter, Keva, born in 1970. He also has a son, Sean, born in 1970. In 1976, he married his second wife, Matilda Johnson. They had two children, daughter Maiyisha (born in 1976) and son Ahmad Jr. (born in 1978). They divorced in 1979.

In 1985, Rashād married Cosby Show actress Phylicia Ayers-Allen, to whom he proposed on national television during the pregame show of NBC's broadcast of the Thanksgiving Day football game between the Detroit Lions and the New York Jets.[19] It was the third marriage for both. Unlike many actresses, she adopted her husband's surname (shortly after the wedding), and has kept the professional name "Phylicia Rashād" ever since. Out of this marriage, he gained a stepson Billy Bowles (born 1973). After a year of marriage, Ahmad and Phylicia had a daughter, Condola Phylea Rashād, named after his mother. In 2001, after nearly sixteen years of marriage, Ahmad and Phylicia divorced.

In 2007, Rashād wed his fourth wife, Sale Johnson (ex-wife of Woody Johnson, Johnson & Johnson billionaire heir and New York Jets owner). He gained three step-daughters from this marriage: Casey Johnson (1979–2010), Jamie Johnson (b. 1982),[20] and Daisy Johnson (b. 1987). They adopted Sale Johnson's granddaughter, Ava-Monroe (born August 14, 2006), then divorced in 2013.[21]


  1. ^ a b "Moore exciting coaches and fans". Spokane Daily Chronicle. October 27, 1971. p. 31. 
  2. ^ "Moore facing Portland theft attempt charge". Eugene Register-Guard. November 4, 1970. p. 1D. 
  3. ^ Cawood, Neil (November 5, 1970). "Bobby Moore suspended for Air Force-Oregon battle". Eugene Register-Guard. p. 1C. 
  4. ^ "Moore bound to grand jury". Eugene Register-Guard. November 23, 1970. p. 1C. 
  5. ^ "UO's Moore on probation for one year". Eugene Register-Guard. January 5, 1971. p. 3B. 
  6. ^ a b "Moore 4th pick". Ellensburg Daily Record (Ellensburg, Washington). UPI. February 1, 1972. p. 7. 
  7. ^ College Football Hall of Fame[dead link]
  8. ^ "Moore, Drougas taken in first round". Eugene Register-Guard. February 1, 1972. p. 1B. 
  9. ^ "Three ex-Ducks get rookie spots". Eugene Register-Guard. UPI. December 24, 1972. p. 4B. 
  10. ^ "Cards get Bills' Shaw". Palm Beach Post. Associated Press. January 27, 1974. p. E2. 
  11. ^ Baker, Tony (July 21, 1976). "Rashad is on the road back". Eugene Register-Guard. Associated Press. p. 3B. 
  12. ^ "Rashad dealt by Seahawks; Picard placed on waivers". Spokane Daily Chronicle. Associated Press. September 8, 1976. p. 19. 
  13. ^ a b Olderman, Murray (July 26, 1981). "Rashad made a name for himself...twice". Pittsburgh Press. p. D-2. 
  14. ^ 1987 04 25 NBC GOW Baltimore Orioles at Milwaukee Brewers on YouTube
  15. ^ William J. Baker (2007). "Playing With God: Religion and Modern Sport". Harvard University Press. p. 227. Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  16. ^ "Bobby moore has changed more than name". The Bulletin (Bend, Oregon). Associated Press. October 23, 1973. p. 10. 
  17. ^ Brownfield, Paul (2 January 2013). "Briefly a Rising Star, Forever a Mourning Son". The New York Times. Retrieved 17 February 2013. 
  18. ^ Olderman, Murray. "Rashad Made A Name For Himself...Twice". The Pittsburgh Press. Retrieved 26 December 2014. 
  19. ^ Moses, Gavin (December 16, 1985). "Sportscaster Ahmad Rashad Scores with a Televised Proposal to Cosby's Phylicia Ayers-Allen". People. Retrieved November 18, 2008. 
  20. ^ Vanity Fair, September 2006
  21. ^ "Ahmad Rashad Divorcing Sale Johnson". People. February 11, 2013. Retrieved 2013-03-04. 

External links