We’ve known for some time that former Gonzaga guard Demetri “Meech” Goodson was giving up basketball to return to his home state of Texas and pursue college football with the remainder of his amateur eligibility. We learned today through The Spokesman-Review (via Fox 26 Houston) that Goodson will end up at Baylor for his two seasons on the gridiron. Presuming that Bears head coach Art Briles is aware that he’s adding a tremendously athletic 6’0, 175-pounder with a ridiculous first step and quick hands to his roster, Goodson told the television station that he will be enrolled in the Waco school and ready to work out very soon.
Just get my transcript from Gonzaga shipped over to Baylor. I shipped it out (Saturday). Once they get all that stuff done, I’ll be there. It’s a great feeling. I’m excited. A bit nervous because I haven’t played (football) in a while. Once I go and start hitting the weights and learning their system, I’ll be all right. I could probably go overseas and make some money. But professionally, football will be a better move for me just because of the number of basketball players who make it and the number of football players. That was basically why I did it.
Considering that there isn’t much of an NBA market for undersized point guards who average five points per game and have trouble shooting the ball from distance (career 20% three-point shooter), this is a fairly enlightened move on Goodson’s part. With the transfer, not only does he give himself two seasons to fully re-adjust to playing football — the last time he suited up on the field was in 2006, during his sophomore year in high school — but he also joins a Baylor team coming off a 7-6 (4-4 Big 12) season where the depth chart shows only one returning starter at his favored cornerback position. An opportunity to prove himself against the light-em-up offenses of the conference would enable Goodson a pretty good opportunity to eventually become a future NFL defensive back. Incidentally, his older brother, Mike Goodson, a considerably bulkier player at 210 lbs., is currently a running back with the Carolina Panthers (see video of a TD last season here).
The intriguing part to this transfer saga between sports is what, if any, effect this might have on Baylor basketball. The Bears are already settled in the point guard slot for the 2011-12 season with incumbent junior AJ Walton manning the spot and JuCo transfer Pierre Jackson coming in to provide relief. But what if something goes wrong with one of those two players prior to the 2012-13 season (which, coincidentally, is when Goodson would be eligible to play his fourth and final season of hoops)? Or, what if Goodson’s foray into football doesn’t go as well as planned (injury, rustiness, etc.)? Is Scott Drew really going to sit idly by and not accidentally “bump” into Goodson at the athletic training facilities or cafeteria when there’s a proven winner on the hardwood walking around his campus? Would he not want a seasoned veteran like Goodson in his locker room to provide backup minutes as an athletic defender to close out games?
Drew has made major waves in his ability to recruit nationally at a school with virtually no basketball tradition, earning commitments from top players such as Perry Jones, III (Duncanville, TX), Deuce Bello (Greensboro, NC), and Quincy Miller (Winston-Salem, NC) in recent years. Are we really supposed to believe that he doesn’t have the power of persuasion needed to entice Goodson for a final run in the gym? Only time will tell, but it wouldn’t shock us in the least if we see Goodson suiting up for the Bears in both the primary fall and winter sports two seasons from now.