Moore overcoming obstacles in successful final year
Alonzo Moore is a 2004 and 2005 All-American, 2004 Big Ten Indoor champion in the triple jump, and 2004 All-Big Ten athlete. He is also currently the No. 1 ranked triple jumper in the nation.It’s hard to believe that he’s had a few large obstacles in the way of his achievements, but Moore has overcome some very difficult circumstances, including having flat feet and finding out recently that he has scoliosis.He considers overcoming these obstacles his greatest accomplishment.”The things I’ve went through … finding out that I have scoliosis in my back. My back is at a 32 degree angle, it’s shaped like an S, [and] having flat feet,” Moore said. “[There are] just a lot of things that I’ve went through and I’m still here being able to compete and do a good job at it.”Moore’s goals for this season are simply to stay healthy.”My first one [goal] is staying healthy, which I’ve been doing a good job at. I haven’t had any real major or serious injuries like I’ve had in the past year,” he said. “[And then] just to better myself, train harder, get stronger and get faster so I can jump better. Jumping better is always one of my main goals, [and] in order to jump further I have to get stronger and faster. So those are things that I’ve been trying to work on.”Moore is exactly what men’s track and field head coach Ed Nuttycombe is looking for — an athlete that can perform well and does his best under pressure situations. “He’s a great competitor. He loves to compete,” Nuttycombe said. “He likes it to come down to the last jump, and not everybody can do that. He likes the pressure. He likes to be pushed. He likes to be challenged.”Even doctors have told Alonzo that he is blessed to be such a gifted athlete. Moore recognizes that he is blessed to be able to compete at such a high level.”Just being able to do the things that I can do — doctors say I shouldn’t be doing this, because I’ve got flat feet I shouldn’t be able to run as fast or jump as high, and to continue doing track,” Moore said.He also said that his inspirations throughout his life have been his parents.”They both are the only people that really I could say that are in my life that I look up to,” Moore said. “They’ve been there for me, supporting me. That’s what I want to do when I get older and have kids, support them make sure they have everything they need and take care of my parents, since they’ve taken care of me.”Moore has accomplished his goal of staying healthy so far this season, and is pleased with his indoor success thus far.”My first meet I did better than I had in years before,” Moore said. “I jumped 51’10”, [and the] second meet I just did long jump and jumped my [personal record] of 24’6″, and came back and jumped 53’2″ so I’d say competition would be going pretty good.”Alonzo is considered the favorite at the Big Ten indoor championships that start a week from Saturday. He already qualified for the national indoor championships on March 10.And while Moore is pleased with his individual efforts, Nuttycombe shares the enthusiasm of one of his top athletes.”I think that it’s been going real well,” Nuttycomb said. “I think that he’s right where he needs to be at this point. He hasn’t jumped too much, which is usually better for him to not have jumped too much. I think his training is right where it needs to be to jump well in the big, most important meets of the season.”The senior from Hampton, Va., hopes that his track career can flourish well beyond his days at UW “If my body can still hold up after this season as far as track, then I want to continue with track,” Moore said. “That’s one of the main things determining what I’m actually going to do after I graduate.”But his long-term goal goes well beyond just continuing his track career. Instead, Moore has his eyes set on the Olympics after his collegiate career comes to a close.”The Olympics [are] one of the big goals since I’ve been in track. When I was younger, I always thought I wanted to do the Olympics,” Moore said. “Since I could remember, it’s my biggest dream, I want to be that person out there running and jumping.”Considering the obstacles he has already overcome to continue with his track aspirations, it seems like no goal of Moore’s is unattainable. For now, though, Moore is focused on capturing a Big Ten title and capping an already successful career for Wisconsin.