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Ahmad Rashād[1](born 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.

Ahmad Rashād
Candid head and shoulders photograph of Rashad wearing a baseball cap bearing the Oregon Ducks logo
Rashād in January 2009
No. 28, 27
Position:Wide receiver
Personal information
Born: (1949-11-19) November 19, 1949 (age 70)
Portland, Oregon
Height:6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight:205 lb (93 kg)
Career information
High school:Tacoma (WA) Mount Tahoma
NFL Draft:1972 / Round: 1 / Pick: 4
Career history
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Receiving yards:6,831
Player stats at
Player stats at PFR

An All-American running back and wide receiver from Oregon, 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 lifeEdit

Born Robert Earl Moore in 1949 in Portland, Oregon, he played high school football in Tacoma, Washington. Rashād graduated from Mount Tahoma High School[2] and accepted an athletic scholarship to the University of Oregon in Eugene. He played football for the Ducks under head coach Jerry Frei, became a member of Omega Psi Phi fraternity, and majored in elementary education at Oregon.[3]

During his junior year in college, Rashād had legal issues in Portland, and was charged with felony theft in November 1970.[4][5][6] He pleaded guilty to a reduced charge, a misdemeanor, in early 1971.[7]

In 1972, Rashād converted from Pentecostalism to Islam. He had started to study Islam in college.[8] A year later, Bobby Moore legally changed his name to Ahmad Rashād, which means "admirable one led to truth" in Arabic.[9][1] He adopted his last name from his Egyptian-American mentor, biochemist Rashad Khalifa,[10] with whom he studied Arabic.[11] Khalifa was assassinated in 1990.[10]

Football careerEdit

At Oregon, Rashād played wide receiver and wingback as a sophomore in 1969 and made the all-conference team.[12] He moved to running back, where he was an All-American in 1971 — in the same backfield with quarterback Dan Fouts.[2] Rashād was named to the College Football Hall of Fame on May 9, 2007.[13]

Rashād was the fourth player selected in the 1972 NFL Draft,[3] taken by the St. Louis Cardinals.[14] He made the UPI all-rookie team in 1972,[15] 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.[16] 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.[17]

Rashād was in the training camp of the expansion Seattle Seahawks, after signing as a free agent, then was traded days before the start of the 1976 regular season, sent to the Minnesota Vikings for a future draft pick.[18] He originally failed the Vikings' physical, but was kept on the team due to the actions of quarterback Fran Tarkenton.[9] The Vikings made it back to the Super Bowl that season, their last appearance through 2018.

During his professional 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 at the Met", or, alternatively, "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 careerEdit

After his football career, Rashād covered NFL, NBA, and MLB[19] televised contests as a studio anchor and game reporter for NBC and ABC, as well as hosting NBA Inside Stuff for 16 seasons. 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. In 1988 he filled in for Robb Weller on the weekend edition of Entertainment Tonight (then known as Entertainment This Week). He used to interview long-time friend Michael Jordan frequently while he was at NBC. In early 2013, he became a panelist on the daily talk show Morning Drive on the Golf Channel, but left that summer. Rashād has narrated the yearly highlight films for NBA championship teams since 2012.

Personal lifeEdit

Rashād has been married five times and divorced four. 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 actress Phylicia Ayers-Allen, known for her work on The Cosby Show. He proposed to her earlier that year 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.[20] It was the third marriage for each of them. Unike many actresses, Phylicia took her husband's surname. She has kept the name "Phylicia Rashād" as her professional one since their divorce. Out of this marriage, he gained a stepson Billy Bowles (born 1973). After a year of marriage, they had a daughter, Condola Phylea Rashād, named after his mother. In 2001, after nearly sixteen years of marriage, they divorced. In 2005 he met his first biological son Geoffery Simmons through Amara (formerly Medina Adoption Agency). Geoffery had been put up for adoption in 1967 when Rashad's then long-term girlfriend Melody Daniels (maiden name Neal) gave birth to baby boy Neal. Rashad went on to college and Melody went back to school as well. 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 stepdaughters from this marriage: Casey Johnson (1977–2010), Jamie Johnson (b. 1982),[21] and Daisy Johnson (b. 1987). After Casey's death, they adopted Sale Johnson's granddaughter, Ava-Monroe (born August 14, 2006). They divorced in 2013.[22]

In 2016, he married Ana Luz Rodriguez-Paz, a psychologist in South Florida.[23]


  1. ^ a b "Bobby Moore has changed more than name". The Bulletin. (Bend, Oregon). Associated Press. October 23, 1973. p. 10.
  2. ^ a b "Moore exciting coaches and fans". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). October 27, 1971. p. 31.
  3. ^ a b "Moore 4th pick". Ellensburg Daily Record. (Washington). UPI. February 1, 1972. p. 7.
  4. ^ "Moore facing Portland theft attempt charge". Eugene Register-Guard. November 4, 1970. p. 1D.
  5. ^ Cawood, Neil (November 5, 1970). "Bobby Moore suspended for Air Force-Oregon battle". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). p. 1C.
  6. ^ "Moore bound to grand jury". Eugene Register-Guard. November 23, 1970. p. 1C.
  7. ^ "UO's Moore on probation for one year". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). January 5, 1971. p. 3B.
  8. ^ Baker, William J. (2007). "Playing With God: Religion and Modern Sport". Harvard University Press. p. 227. Retrieved December 26, 2014.
  9. ^ a b Olderman, Murray (July 26, 1981). "Rashad made a name for himself...twice". Pittsburgh Press. p. D-2.
  10. ^ a b Brownfield, Paul (January 2, 2013). "Briefly a Rising Star, Forever a Mourning Son". The New York Times. Retrieved February 17, 2013.
  11. ^ Olderman, Murray (July 26, 1981). "Rashad made a name for himself...twice". Pittsburgh Press. p. D-2.
  12. ^ "Bobby Moore all Pacific-8". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). November 30, 1969. p. 1B.
  13. ^ Ahmad Rashād at the College Football Hall of Fame
  14. ^ "Moore, Drougas taken in first round". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). February 1, 1972. p. 1B.
  15. ^ "Three ex-Ducks get rookie spots". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). UPI. December 24, 1972. p. 4B.
  16. ^ "Cards get Bills' Shaw". Palm Beach Post. Associated Press. January 27, 1974. p. E2.
  17. ^ Baker, Tony (July 21, 1976). "Rashad is on the road back". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. p. 3B.
  18. ^ "Rashad dealt by Seahawks; Picard placed on waivers". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). Associated Press. September 8, 1976. p. 19.
  19. ^ 1987 04 25 NBC GOW Baltimore Orioles at Milwaukee Brewers on YouTube
  20. ^ Moses, Gavin (December 16, 1985). "Sportscaster Ahmad Rashad Scores with a Televised Proposal to Cosby's Phylicia Ayers-Allen". People. Retrieved November 18, 2008.
  21. ^ Vanity Fair, September 2006
  22. ^ "Ahmad Rashad Divorcing Sale Johnson". People. February 11, 2013. Retrieved March 4, 2013.
  23. ^ MaGee, Ny (May 25, 2016). "Ahmad Rashad Gets Married For Fifth Time". EURweb. Retrieved May 5, 2018.*MrU49v*dVxjbSLHvOuepJJo2d%21FGNVZbU%21tu4kuOYMaWRoAuZCbuNUHQg52AaFfVkubfz80ZGvsZNgmK28oq

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