Goodman in No Hurry

Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) safety Tahaan Goodman has plenty of options, but wants to continue to take visits before making any sort of decision...

Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) safety Tahaan Goodman has racked up an impressive collection of collegiate offers but, with the season opener less than a week away, he is spending more time focusing on leading the Cougars to a championship.

"I'm feeling great. I get to finally show what I'm about and what I've worked for. Our team looks great. There are a few things we need to work on, a few holes we need to plug, but we are looking great," he said.

Goodman, one of the West's top uncommitted recruits, is taking his time with the whole process, ensuring he explores all of his options.

"Everything has been kind of mellow for me lately. I've been taking the unofficial visits that I can take. All the places I can go to, I want to go to, and just try to make the most out of everything. Recently, I've just been to USC and UCLA. I was supposed to visit LSU, but I didn't get the chance to. I've just been visiting the schools that are in my backyard right now," he said.

Though Goodman names no favorites, both of the Los Angeles area schools are clearly prominent on his list.

"I want to major in communications and business, and USC has good programs there. The fit of the school is great and that's what I really like about it. I've had the chance to talk to the coaches about that.

"UCLA is great. It is a high academic school and I know they would stay on me about my grades. I would be great to build up the football program, try to turn it around. I love the new staff; they started recruiting me when the new staff came in, and I like them a lot. They are great coaches," he said.

The safety says he's "still keeping Washington in mind," and also has plans to take one of his official visits to LSU.

"The only official I have right now is to LSU when they play Alabama. A California kid going to the SEC and just making things happen would be great; I'd have a lot of fun with that," he said.

Goodman will take all five visits.

The 6'2.5", 195 lb. prospect has talked to an overwhelming amount of coaches throughout his recruitment and has meshed with a few in particular.

"Coach Meat [Demetrice Martin] from UCLA; I've bonded with him a lot. Coach [Martin] Sanders, from USC, too. There are a lot of coaches. From Washington, Coach [Keith] Heyward and Coach [Tosh] Lupoi; I've bonded with them, too," he said.

With plans to announce his decision either later in or after the season, "possibly" at the US Army All-American Game, Goodman has been handling the pressure from friends and teams extremely well.

"I tell them 'no comment'," he laughed. "I'm doing my own thing; I don't want to base my decision off of anyone else's judgement. I just want to know in my heart what I have to do and what best fits me, and just keep it at that."

For now, Goodman is all business on the field and has taken his role as a leader quite seriously.

"I definitely improved in being a leader on the team, making sure everyone is bonding and taking care of their responsibilities. We have a lot of young guys, so we have to bring some of those guys up so they will make plays," he said.

This fall, the talented prospect is out to prove that the Cougars' defense is the best in the league.

"Truthfully, I think we have the best defense in the Inland Empire. Not just with Chris Hawkins and I, but with the rising underclassmen. We have a lot of talent; I think a lot of the younger defensive backs are going to get offers this year. They are better than we were when we were their age. We just have a lot of weapons, so it should be good," he said.

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