Travis Goethel wasn't a name you heard in the Notre Dame recruiting circles the first several months, but it may be a name Irish recruiting fans should remember. At the Los Angeles Scout.com combine Travis registered a 4.66 forty and a 4.44 shuttle. He topped that by impressing those in attendance with his performance in the one-on-one drills.
While Notre Dame has more players (nine) on the roster from the state of California than they do from any other state, not every California kid is eager to make their way to the Midwest to play football for the Irish.
"I'm really interested in them. They're definitely one of my top schools," said Goethel of the Irish. "Coach Polian came down 2-3 weeks ago, and he and coach Weis are coming again this week.
"He (Polian) said they were really interested and that they were going to follow me, and recruit me.
"Distance wouldn't matter to me at all. I've was born in California and I've lived here my entire life. I'd like the opportunity to experience different things," he said.
What about the cold January mornings?
"That's not a big deal," he replied. "My friends say that I'd be crazy to do it, but all you need to do is put on more clothes.
"Yeah, that wouldn't bother me at all."
What does Goethel you like about Notre Dame?
"I really didn't know much," he responded. "I started really looking at them once they started recruiting me.
"I like how long it's been around - the history of the school," he continued "I think they are going to rebuild the program, especially with the new head coach. He's won a couple Super Bowls so you know he can win.
"Rudy was the first football movie I saw," he added.
What other schools are recruiting Goethel?
"UCLA (offer), San Diego State (offer), Nebraska, Michigan, Colorado State, Washington State and most of the other PAC-10 schools," Goethel replied.
What position are most schools recruiting him to play?
"I play ‘Will' linebacker in high school, but I'm not sure where I'd play in college," he responded.
When will he make a decision?
"I want to take my trips during my football season, but I want to decide before the end of my season," he said.
3.0 g.p.a/SAT May 6
Comment: Notre Dame has only offered a couple linebackers at this time. The fact that Charlie Weis is making a trip to see Travis tells you how much they like him as a player. He's a very likeable guy and he definitely is open to spending four years in the Midwest.
More from our conversation.
"I'm going to the UCLA camp and the USC camp.
"I went to the Southern Cal Nike combine…
How did you do?
"I broke one dude's nose… He was out for quite a while. His eyes were all watery and there was blood everywhere."
Wow, did you feel bad about it?
"Nope.. part of the game dude…
I love the attitude, but seriously, you did you feel bad?
"Not at all dude, that's part of the game."
There is no way I can explain what a refreshing interview this was. I can't adequately characterize or describe my conversation "on paper" - I'm simply not that good of a writer. Travis is incredibly easy going, forthright and uniquely genuine – It seemed like had known him for 10 years.