Golden Looking for Golden Year

Rushing for 2,500-plus yards and 34 touchdowns in a season in the state of Florida should be enough to have every college recruiter in the country after you. New Port Richey (FL) Gulf running back Adrian Golden did just that in 2008 and although the recruiters will likely start beating down the door. It has been relatively quiet so far.

He looks for a golden year in 2009 and for many heads to turn.

He has only been at Gulf HS for one season but evidently took to it very well. The second leading rusher in the state of Florida for 2008, Adrian Golden transferred in from Ridgewood where he played as a sophomore. Even though he had to learn a whole new system and had a new offensive line, Golden figured he was going to have a big season in 2008.

"I kind of expected it," Golden said in a phone interview. "It was my first year at the school, and I was happy to make first team all-state."

Amazingly enough, his name isn't out very much there just yet and so Golden has been under the radar in the recruiting world. That should change as he starts visiting colleges and when ever his highlight films hit the airwaves. Until then, he will continue doing his thing which is run like the NFL's all time leading ground gainer.

"My vision is my biggest strength.," Golden said. "People tell me I run like Emmit Smith, I stay low to the ground."

He claims a low 4.5 second time in the 40 and a personal best 10.9 seconds in the 100 meters. Those numbers are plenty fast for any big time back. At 5-9, and 183 pounds he has already attracted attention from Alabama, who he says, "I get emails from them every day."

The Florida Gators are on his mind now though and Golden recently made a trip to Gainesville with his teammate Leon Orr to check out the Gators at their junior day on January 31. It was a trip he wasn't expecting to see what he saw.

"It went well," Golden said of the visit to Gainesville. "I liked the academics a lot. Before I went I was thinking about going to Alabama. But as soon as I walked in there they talked about all the academics and all the players graduate. After graduation if you don't play football you don't have to look for jobs, the jobs come looking for you. I really liked that the football program runs the ball and in the spread.

He also really liked the people he encountered at Florida.

"I really liked the coaches," he said. "They seemed like they really care and want to treat you like a family member. I like the church too. They were really into the spiritual stuff. I haven't seen another team so into Bible study and all of that and I really think that stuff helped win a national championship."

The Gators have always had a special place for him in his heart.

"Growing up I liked the Gators," he said. "I liked them when Jacquez Green and all of them were playing. Lately I liked them, but it seemed like everyone was hopping on their band wagon, so I was trying to stay away from all of that."

Golden plans on attending camp at Florida this year so he can try and prove himself. In college he wants to major in criminal justice and the academics as stressed above are very important to him.

It should be an interesting spring and summer for Adrian Golden as his profile builds and he becomes more prominent on the recruiting scene. looks forward to being there every step of the way.

Discuss on the premium forums

Fightin Gators Top Stories