Teammates, Badgers family react to death of Brent Moss

MADISON, Wis. — Brent Moss might just be one of the most important players to wear Badger red. While he trails names like Ron Dayne and Jonathan Taylor on the Badgers’ all-time rushing list, the 1993 Rose Bowl MVP revived the program.

Moss, who died at the age of 50 over the weekend, is remembered for many things.

To name a few, in 1993 he led the Badgers to a Big Ten title and their first Rose Bowl berth since 1963 against UCLA. During the game, Moss rushed 158 yards and scored two touchdowns in the 21-6 victory. During the season, Moss totaled 1,673 yards and 16 touchdowns on 312 carries, earning Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year honors for the 1993-94 season.

But above all else, people remember Moss as tough.

“He’s just a tough guy with a big heart and, you know, when I think of an alley cat, I think of a guy who’s ready to play anytime anywhere, does not have to be the most pristine area, it doesn’t have to 72 degrees. The way he played for our program, that’s who we still are today,” said Tarek Saleh, an NFL veteran and one of Moss’s former Badger teammates.

RELATED: Former Badgers running back Brent Moss dead at 50

Barry Alvarez particularly liked Moss, saying in his autobiography that in short-yardage critical situations, he’d choose Moss over everyone.

According to the Voice of the Badgers, Matt Lepay, Alvarez doesn’t throw around compliments like that lightly.

“There’s a lot of ways you can speak to Brent’s productivity and his toughness, but I think that line from Barry Alvarez sums it up perfectly, that when you absolutely, positively have to have that one yard, Brent Moss is his guy,” Lepay said.

Lepay went on to say that Moss helped shape the future greatness of Wisconsin Football, and birthed ‘RBU’.

“I think the mentality that Wisconsin Football became, in many ways, maybe in every way, it initiated in those early ’90s teams and certainly that Rose Bowl title team, led in large part by Brent Moss,” Lepay said.

Now teammates are paying respect to the back who carried Racine Park to a state title, rushed for 3,000 yards at UW, and once rushed for 100 yards in 17 consecutive games for the Badgers.

“It’s just sad to see someone so young pass away, and a teammate, you know, who we consider our brother, to die at this age,” Saleh said.