First of all, John Goebel has a football pedigree. His father, Karl, was a nose tackle at Ball State in the 70's, and his older brother Mark was the starting fullback for T.J. Duckett at Michigan State only a few years ago. It's now John‘s turn, and he couldn‘t be more excited about his opportunity. The Bearcat staff is apparently just as excited since they're trying to get John on campus as soon as possible. "They've talked to me about coming in June to take a couple classes and start working out with the team. I'd like to do that, but I'm not sure my mom wants me to since I'm the baby of the family. But I'm just so excited to play college football and get in there with the team."
Getting the opportunity to play running back for the Bearcats was a factor in John's choosing Cincinnati so he was asked about his strengths as a runner. "I've been playing running back since I was eight years old. My dad always told me to get as much yardage as possible. (Karl Goebel coached his boys for twelve years and is a coach on the Brother Rice staff.) I'm a down hill runner, but I juke more than people think. I feel like I'm bragging, and I don't want to brag." I reassured John that I didn't want modesty so he continued. "I run track, and I'm one of the fastest in the state this year. One of my goals is to get to 215 (lbs.) and run a legitimate 4.4 forty." John presently carries 209 pounds on his 6'1" frame.
Brother Rice running back and University of Cincinnati verbal commitment John Goebel.
Goebel was one of Cincinnati's earliest verbals, but it was a well thought out decision. "I gave my verbal a day before our first practice. The deal was that even if I had gotten a career ending injury, the scholarship was still good so that played into it. I also had made a visit to Cincinnati, and they wanted me as a running back while others wanted me as a safety. Plus, my parents and I really liked Coach Dantonio and the other coaches. Also I looked at their team, and it's so young so I know they're going to get better. I just loved everything about them and the campus. I could have held out and maybe have gotten a Big Ten offer, but I think Cincinnati is a big time school too. Also I wanted to focus on winning a state championship, and I didn‘t want recruiting to get in the way." (John helped lead Brother Rice to the Michigan Division 2 state championship by rushing for 157 yards in the title game and avenging their only two losses to Michigan's #1 team, Orchard Lake St. Mary's.)
In case it hasn't been made clear already, this is a close knit family ready to make the 4-5 hour weekly drive to Cincinnati. "Yes sir. We're really a close family. I know they're going to make all the games, and it will actually be easier for them now. Before when my brother played at Michigan State, we both had games on Saturdays. Now I'm the only one playing so it should be easier. My mom just said it's all about me. I know it'll be long and Cincinnati will probably be the shortest trip, but my mom says they're up for it." Karl will take a hiatus from coaching at Brother Rice to follow his son's career at UC.
John was named to the Detroit Free Press's Dream Team which recognizes the top 23 players in the state and will be playing with Aaron Webster in an east/west all star game on July 22.
John and fellow Bearcat recruit Aaron Webster have already played against each other so John was asked to comment on Aaron. "Yes Sir. I played against Aaron Webster when I was a sophomore and got my first start. I remember he's a great football player, and I read a lot about him during the season. I was really happy when I heard that he had committed. He's a really great athlete and a really good basketball player too-the more athletes the better."
Since they took their recruiting visit together, John was also very familiar with D.J. Young of Sexton High School. "I got to know D.J. pretty well during our visit. I've been trying to talk to him about coming to Cincinnati. He's a really nice kid. I'd love to have him on the team."
John Goebel was a captain on his high school team, and the reasons why became very apparent as we talked. He's bright, sincere, modest and a heck of a football player. Yes sir, this kid's a keeper.