Inside Garrett Goebel's Decision

Now that the dust has settled and he can concentrate on his senior season, Garrett Goebel opens up about why he picked the Buckeyes. Find out who was the leader for his services all along and where he has improved during the summer.

It's not often that Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel gets a surprise.

For that reason, Garrett Goebel should feel pretty proud of himself. On Friday, July 27 he placed a phone call to the Buckeyes' head coach to deliver some big news.

"He was like, ‘So what did you do today,' and I said, ‘I was working out and I decided I wanted to be a Buckeye,' " Goebel told BSB. "He was like, ‘Woah, is that right?'

"He was pretty excited."

So, too, were Buckeye fans. The defensive tackle prospect joins Washington Court House (Ohio) Miami Trace defensive end Nathan Williams as the second verbal commitment along the defensive line for the class of 2008.

As a junior, Goebel had 16 tackles for loss and 9 sacks, earning all-area and all-conference honors. Scout lists him as a four-star prospect and as the No. 4 defensive tackle in the country.

While he boasted offers from the likes of Notre Dame, Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois and West Virginia, the final decision came down to OSU and Michigan – both of whom had offered.

The Wolverines' early offer gave them an edge it apparently took the Buckeyes some time to overcome.

"Michigan was my favorite throughout most of the process because they offered me pretty early and I was able to develop a good relationship with them," he said. "Michigan got in and I kind of liked them and then Illinois and West Virginia were in there too, but in the end it was just Ohio State for me."

In the weeks leading up to his final decision, Goebel stopped talking to the media and concentrated on simply making his choice. He took unofficial visits to both OSU and U-M before eventually deciding on the Buckeyes.

As he contemplated a final decision, he simply blocked out all external distractions.

"It was really between them and Michigan and they were both great schools," he said. "It was hard to find anything negative about either of them. I just felt that Ohio State was a better fit for me and I felt a lot more comfortable with the coaches and the players at Ohio State. I thought it was the place I went to be for the next four years of my life."

In addition to being a state champion wrestler, Goebel has played all along the defensive line in college. The OSU coaches, however, have told him they plan to use him as a defensive tackle but could move him around if necessary. Personally, Goebel said he does not have a preference as to where he would like to play.

After working out this summer, the 6-4 Goebel has grown to 280 pounds and claims to have improved his overall speed. He is fully academically qualified.

Goebel is unsure if he will take an unofficial visit to Columbus this fall. However, he said he has received text messages from Dublin (Ohio) Coffman's Jake Stoneburner and Orlando (Fla.) Edgewater's Michael Brewster – both of whom have also verbally committed to OSU – congratulating him.

With his decision out of the way, Goebel can now focus on his senior season.

"It felt great," he said. "I've felt relieved ever since. Now I can just concentrate on helping my team win a state championship."

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