Ever since his days playing for the Little Cards, Dominick Goodman has stood out on the football field.
Goodman, the former Colerain quarterback and University of Cincinnati wide receiver, is still making a significant impact with the Cleveland Gladiators of the Arena Football League.
On Thursday, Goodman was named to the All-Arena first team. It was the first time in his career he received first team honors and his second All-Arena selection overall. He led the AFL in receptions with 156 this season.
“It means a lot,” Goodman told The Enquirer. “Just my hard work and everything from the offseason is paying off.”
Goodman and the Gladiators (17-1) play Arizona (15-3) in ArenaBowl XXVII at 8 p.m. Saturday at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland.
“We are locked in and focused on a good Arizona team,” Goodman said. “We want to stay ready and practice hard.”
Goodman, the quarterback on the Colerain 2004 state championship team who started with the Little Cards youth football organization as a youngster, never expected to have 156 receptions this season, but says he makes plays when the ball comes his way and he has created openings on his routes.
“Doesn’t shock me,” Colerain football coach Tom Bolden said of Goodman’s success. “I am still shocked he’s not in the NFL, to be honest.”
Goodman was back in the area recently helping the Cardinals prepare for their Aug. 29 season opener against La Salle in the Skyline Chili Crosstown Showdown. Goodman coached the wide receivers as a Colerain assistant last season and will probably coach the quarterbacks this year, Bolden said.
Bolden said Goodman returned to Colerain and worked relentlessly in the offseason on catching passes and running routes. Bolden, who was a Colerain assistant on the 2004 squad when Goodman was a senior, said he could see the former Colerain standout playing a slot position in the NFL.
“He catches everything you throw at him,” Bolden said. “… He’s got the best hands I’ve ever seen.”
The current Colerain players enjoyed seeing Goodman help with the team, and Bolden understands his assistant coach might have to delay his full-time duties until later this month. He’s fine with that.
“I said (to Goodman), ‘Go win the whole thing,'” Bolden said of the Arena Bowl.