Shaq Goodwin could ‘revolutionize the WR position’ as we know it — UGA, Alabama and Florida among finalists

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Have you ever seen a wide receiver who was 6-foot-8 and 240 pounds, catches the ball like he has glue on his hands, and runs the 40-yard dash in less than 4.6 seconds?

No, we haven’t either. Ever.

We present William “Shaq” Goodwin, the towering wide receiver at Southwest DeKalb High School, which will play Tucker at 7:30 p.m. Thursday on WSB-TV’s digital channel 2.2 and on www.wsbtv.com

Buck Godfrey, the legendary coach who has sent a pipeline of players to the college and NFL ranks over the last 29 years at Southwest DeKalb, hasn’t seen anything like it either.

The old ball coach thinks Goodwin “could revolutionize the wide receiver position” as we know it.

“In football, he could be legendary at wide receiver,” Godfrey told the AJC. “They may try to put him at tight end in college but he has got the speed and finesse to add another dimension to the wide receiver position as we know it. That would be something real serious. Now everybody is talking about big cornerbacks. William could revolutionize the wide receiver position.”

You’ve probably heard Shaq Goodwin’s name before, but not for football. He’s one of the top 10 college basketball prospects in the nation and — in my opinion — a candidate to be Georgia’s first “one-and-done” NBA prospect since Derrick Favors.

Shaq’s top five schools are UGA. UCLA, Florida, Alabama and Memphis. He claims he wants to play football in college, too, and said all five finalists are fine with him doing both sports. (We’ll believe it when we see it. Not because we believe Shaq can’t do it but simply because he’s that talented in basketball. He has enormous agility and athleticism for his size. Still very raw but all the tools are there)

Shaq Goodwin, at 6-8 and 240 pounds, could "revolutionize the WR position" we know it, says his legendary HS coach (AJC photo by Michael Carvell)

Shaq Goodwin, at 6-8 and 240 pounds, could "revolutionize the WR position" we know it, says his legendary HS coach (AJC photo by Michael Carvell)

“I wish he could run the ball because I’d love to put a 6-8, 240-pound tailback back there running downhill,” Godfrey said. He was serious. “He can easily run a 4.6 or faster. He has got good control of his muscles. He’s just an athlete.”

Tucker coach Franklin Stephens isn’t so sure about Goodwin’s 4.6. “He looks like he runs faster than that.”

How do you defend a 6-8 wide receiver? Imagine trying to cover the Statue of Liberty. “I was telling my guys that he’s a foot or taller than you,” Stephens said. “He’s an unbelievable athlete and kid. Right now on paper, we don’t have an answer for him. We’re hoping to put pressure on their QB, in some form or fashion. I don’t know if you can stop [Goodwin], you just hope to control him. If they start throwing lob passes to him, you just don’t have anybody that’s going to out-jump him for the football.”

“That’s another thing. I’ve watched a ton of film on Goodwin. The one thing I’ve noticed is that the kid does not drop the football. If it’s a good ball in his direction, he’s going to catch it.”

There was speculation all summer that Goodwin would not play football as a senior year.

There were good reasons for speculation, as Shaq spent his summer criss-crossing the globe playing AAU basketball. He was in Los Angeles for the Adidas tournament about a week ago. Goodwin has only been participating full-time in football for only a few days.

The old ball coach convinced Shaq of the benefits of football.

Georgia's No. 1 basketball prospect, Shaq Goodwin (AJC photo)

Georgia's No. 1 basketball prospect, Shaq Goodwin (AJC photo)

“I have a pretty good relationship with Shaq and his mother, and the lessons you learn in football, I don’t think you can learn in basketball with the way it’s played now,” Godfrey said.

“No. 1, football is a team effort. It takes 11 guys to get the ball down the field. I don’t think you have that in basketball, unless it’s the old-time teams with Bob Cousy and those kinds of guys. Right now, basketball is an individual thing, especially with AAU basketball — I don’t think they play defense at all. No. 2, it’s going to help him with his strength and build stronger character. You will be challenged on the football field like you never will on the basketball court. You’ve got to fight your way through it. No. 3, it’s going to make him a better student because we have study hall that is required and certain grades you’ve got to make to play. No. 4, it’s going to make him an all-around type of player. If you focus only on one sport, you may not open up other areas of life you may need to experience.”

All we can say after that is one thing: Who is Bob Cousy?

Please consider joining us at 7:30 p.m. Thursday to watch Shaq live in action. Tucker is led by defensive end Josh Dawson, who is committed to Vanderbilt but will visit UGA, and linebacker Jacob Sealand, who has also pledged to Vanderbilt.

RELATED:

Note: How good is Shaq? You can watch him yourself on WSB-TV “Thursday Night Football” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday. It’s Tucker vs. SW DeKalb on Channel 2.2, WSB-TV ’s second digital channel. You can also watch games live on wsbtv.com and watch the rebroadcast Friday nights at 1:06 a.m. on Channel 2. It can also be found on the follow cable channels:

  • Comcast 248- Metro Atlanta, Calhoun, Rome        
  • Charter 126 – Metro Atlanta, Athens
  • Windstream 871- Dahlonega, Hiawassee, Cornelia, Commerce
  • ETC 190- Ellijay, Cherokee, Pickens, Gilmer & Fannin counties
  • Plantation 601- Green and Putnam Counties; Knology 168- West Point
     

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– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog

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Got an item? mcarvell@ajc.com

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139 comments Add your comment

Cam Newton

August 25th, 2011
12:39 am

Dont go to UGA they will put you at tight end like they wanted to do me.

Meatlake

August 25th, 2011
1:05 am

Preston

August 25th, 2011
1:30 am

lol meatlake!

cali dawg

August 25th, 2011
1:31 am

next to last

Preston

August 25th, 2011
1:31 am

Come to Athens kid. You’ll love it!

cali dawg

August 25th, 2011
1:32 am

really a loser. cant be first or last. dang it

Columbus

August 25th, 2011
1:45 am

Come on Shaq, play for your home state, brother. It is time to make a stand with Ray Drew, Crowell, MItchell and all the rest. It is time for UGA to be the top school in the nation and it can EASILY be done because now the best talent in the country is right here in our state. All it takes is for the best guys to be a Bulldog instead of going helping Auburn, Bama or Florida win National Championships. It is time for UGA to be THE school. YOUR state, not somebody else’s. I know you are reading this. Come to UGA. We have great QB’s lines up and I mean GREAT passers. So you will get to show what you can do. Be a part of something that you helped build. Dont do a Lebron and join the best instead of beating the best. Be a Michael Jordan instead. Be a Herschel Walker. He could have went anywhere in the nation. He made the difference in HIS STATE winning the national championship and being in the running for it another time and actually being in the national championship game a second time in his 3 years. And he did it at UGA! So will you? Come on, man win at UGA. You will get your shot at the pros. Look at AJ Green from UGA, top receiver picked in the draft. I said TOP receiver brother. Look at Hines Ward. Massaquoi. Stafford. How many skill guys the other 2 schools put out on offense that have a big impact? Jones but what if he had a Murray or Lemay, or whats the QB’s name coming in year after next? Man he is gonna at LEAST be as good as Stafford. Who I add was the #1 draft pick overall, Green a #1, Crowell is going to be a first rounder and we got the number 1back this year looking at coming to UGA, the line is getting rebuilt, Tight ends are set, the defense is going to get stronger EVERY year in this new pro system. Kicking game is top in the nation already. I mean come on man, dont join Florida or Bama……BEAT THEM CUZ YOU ARE THE MAN!

Dekalb Fan

August 25th, 2011
2:19 am

Let’s not get out of hand Buck ,if he was this good And fast he would be dominating. He is not a WR on the next level . He will not be able to get open against college competition. Shaq should make a good tight end if his heart is there.

merbertmoover

August 25th, 2011
3:02 am

yeah….what columbus said

nash

August 25th, 2011
3:32 am

Uga has a 6-7 rec coming in and, the addition of Goodwin would make the rec core a match up problem for every team in the conference but I would rather see he playing the 3-4-or 5 on the basketball court because he plays like Carmelo Anthony. He could be the Dawg that makes every one forget about the human highlight film.

Brown Dog

August 25th, 2011
6:15 am

Good luck to Shaq. He will be a fun kid to watch.

SickandTired

August 25th, 2011
6:34 am

He could really help the UGA basketball program. He would also help the new football coach until he goes to the NBA.

Jacket Man

August 25th, 2011
6:56 am

If he plans on playing both sports in college, then he’ll have to come in on a football scholarship, not a basketball scholarship as it always takes priority over basketball. Therefore, he’ll have to pick a program with an open football scholarship if he wants a free ride and he wants to play both sports.

collegeballfan

August 25th, 2011
7:13 am

He will not play college football.

Vampire Bill

August 25th, 2011
7:38 am

Drooling over the what if’s of this kid. WOW

toad

August 25th, 2011
7:46 am

Saban will beat the sleepin Richt again.

Richt is a clown

August 25th, 2011
7:50 am

Another year of high expectations will come crashing down in a few days in the Dome. Everyone and also the recruits knows this. CMR is a sinking ship.

JB

August 25th, 2011
7:54 am

tide roll will have him on the OL. Would love to see him in Athens, but looks like he’ll play a year or two of basketball and solve all his families money issues with that first contract. Come on to Athens.

well said

August 25th, 2011
7:54 am

@ toad, just like Saban beat Richt at getting Crowell, Drew, Mitchell and Rome, oh wait…

satan

August 25th, 2011
7:58 am

Yep, come play for me. I guarantee I will always have your back. Unless of course you aren’t panning out.

I’m the master at managing my numbers.

Starring William Conrad as Frank Cannon

August 25th, 2011
8:03 am

Kid needs to add upper body weight.

JAWJeRDAWG

August 25th, 2011
8:07 am

Don’t know where your heart is, Shaq, but I hope it is with in-state UGA in whatever sport(s) you wish to play.

With you athletic talents, you could excell in both football and basketball. Would love to see you commit to the Red-and-Black of UGA. We DO need your leadership and talent for however long your college career.

Enjoy this best upcoming youthful time in your life. Wherever you go, I hope you stay healthy and have a good career. Best wishes from this UGA fan. .. Go Dawgs!

valley boy32

August 25th, 2011
8:07 am

WE need you man cmon dont you get tired of your state being the laughing stalk of the south but everybody down south know as long GA talent stay divided UGA or TECH will contiue to behind al. fla or fsu so come on i wish all the talent in those atl school would to athens

Adam

August 25th, 2011
8:12 am

6″8 guys can’t run and their bodies wear down quick. he won’t last. i was thinking i would read an article about a guy with 4 arms.

Trey

August 25th, 2011
8:17 am

Everything about uga. Nice job ajc. Great non biased reporting.

BGB

August 25th, 2011
8:23 am

Man talk about someone not caring about their education. UF is the only school with good academics.

GtDawg4life

August 25th, 2011
8:25 am

he will be quick to suffer a knee injury. Better stick with basketball.

JDawg1785

August 25th, 2011
8:26 am

He sounds like an impressive young man. It would be great to see him in red and black in either sport.

Tech Fan

August 25th, 2011
8:30 am

Carvell,

If basketball is his better of the two sports why not ask him about Georgia Tech?

zulucanibal

August 25th, 2011
8:50 am

Like to say Lebron James was a 6′8 all state WR for St. Marys/ St. Vincent….so yeah we have seen it before.

SEC sage

August 25th, 2011
8:56 am

The 6′ 8 receiver thing is hardly revolutionary, Harold Carmichael did it 40 years ago and was a multiple pro bowler and should be in the Hall of Fame. Goodwin is a rare talent and could present the same kind of weapon that Carmicharl was. He probably should avoid Bama, Chizik is going to run Saban off about as fast as Jimbo Fisher ran off Meyer.

Chi Town

August 25th, 2011
9:03 am

Tuscaloosa bound.

Athens blows.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

August 25th, 2011
9:10 am

Imagine having Shaq and Lonnie Outlaw (6′7) lining up on opposite sides of the field for UGA…would give DBs nightmares!!!

ugab

August 25th, 2011
9:16 am

Maybe he will choose UGA. Looks like all the other talent in ga are going out of state

DZ

August 25th, 2011
9:22 am

Athens is not what it used to be. So sad.

bigdog58

August 25th, 2011
9:36 am

Hate to say it but the kid needs to stay with basketball. First he runs a 4.9 in the 40 and maybe a 4.8 on a good day. Kid has all the skills to be a top power foward but as a football player he not in the top 200 in georgia. High school and college are two different animals that why they redshirt 75% of the kids their first year.

bucket

August 25th, 2011
9:37 am

What’s sad is how some people can only get their kicks by coming on a blog and taking shots at UGA everytime a story is posted. How pathetic!

Good Grief

August 25th, 2011
9:38 am

BGB – ummmm UCLA? no academics? god you’re stupid.

1eyedJack

August 25th, 2011
9:38 am

He’s a long tall drink of water, now ain’t he?

Bobo, Bobo, a pirate's life for me

August 25th, 2011
9:48 am

can u imagine him at 6foot8 lining up with our juco receiver @ 6foot7? tallest receiving core in ncaa?

Bob Loblaw

August 25th, 2011
9:48 am

Stay healthy and do what is best for YOU!!! Go Dawgs!

and yeah, what Columbus said.

dap01

August 25th, 2011
9:49 am

I wonder who Saban will kick off of the oversigned team in order to make room for Goodwin?

dap01

August 25th, 2011
9:50 am

DZ: Your mama came to town.

coach

August 25th, 2011
9:50 am

Shaq listen to me dont waste your time going to uga with their fairweather fans and their looming ncaa investigation that is going to happen , go to kentucky where u can play football and basketball then take your talents on to the nba.

bucket

August 25th, 2011
9:54 am

@ coach – so what is the “looming ncaa investigation” at UGA? You might want to talk to your basketball coach @ Kentucky about that before you answer.

coach

August 25th, 2011
9:59 am

players gettn paid @ uga . it will come out soon just wait

Bob Loblaw

August 25th, 2011
10:00 am

Ha! “Looming investigation!!!” Haters be hatin’. Isn’t Calipari the head bag man, I mean coach at Kentucky?

Contractor

August 25th, 2011
10:03 am

Some people are so nit picky about dumb stuff. He may be the first person this size us younger folks have seen, so going back 100 years doesn’t mean much. The kid is huge, and we’ll find out a lot about his football ability tonight, as Tucker is a tough tough team and they would be the ones to put the pressure on him if anybody. His three finalist are all great, but of course I hope he makes the decision to stay in state, and help to continue the rise of the basketball program with Coach Fox, and maybe possibly give the receiving corps a little depth for the football team.

SEC sage

August 25th, 2011
10:03 am

Chi town- It blows so hard in Tusky that FEMA can’t leave.

Sorry

August 25th, 2011
10:04 am