Goddard named to All-ACC First Team
Published 1:31 pm Tuesday, December 2, 2008
By By KEVIN TRAVIS, Sports Editor
Trimane Goddard has seemed to be in the right place at the right time all season long for the North Carolina Tar Heels.
He has stepped up big time and time again. Because of his standout play this season, Goddard was named to the All-ACC First Team at safety.
The senior, a former star at Roanoke High School, ended Saturday’s 28-20 win over Duke with an interception with 20 seconds left in the game. It was the third time this season that Goddard helped seal a Tar Heel victory.
Goddard picked off a pass in the end zone to preserve a 28-24 victory over the Miami Hurricanes on Sept. 27. He picked off Miami’s Robert Marve in the end zone on the final play of the game.
He also recovered a fumble during Notre Dame’s final possession to wrap up a 29-24 win on Oct. 11. Notre Dame’s Michael Floyd caught a 26-yard pass deep inside North Carolina territory with just seconds remaining, but he fumbled the ball and Goddard pounced on it at the UNC-19.
Goddard has a career-high seven interceptions, which is tied for the national lead. It’s also tied for the third-best single-season effort by a North Carolina player.
He has 156 return yards on the seven interceptions.
The 5-11, 200-pounder, who has 12 interceptions and 176 tackles in his career, has 48 tackles, five pass break-ups, two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble for the Heels (8-4, 4-4 ACC) this season.
He still has one college game to play as the Tar Heels will play in a bowl game. At the beginning of the season, Goddard said he wanted to have fun during his senior year.
With the season he’s had, Goddard has certainly built up a nice memory bank.
Goddard, who wears No. 31, set the tone early for a solid season with an interception in North Carolina’s first game of the season, a 35-27 win over McNeese State.
He picked off a career-best-tying two passes in the win over Miami, including the game-clincher. The previous time also was against Miami, coming in the 2005 season. The senior safety also led the Heels with eight tackles. Goddard was named the ACC Defensive Back of the Week for his play.
Goddard added his fourth interception of the season in North Carolina’s following game, a 38-12 victory over Connecticut.
His fifth interception was one to remember. Goddard picked off the pass and rambled 51 yards to the end zone for his first career touchdown, coming in a 45-24 nod over Boston College.
Goddard also had interceptions in a 28-7 win over Georgia Tech and in the regular-season finale against Duke.
He was named a semifinalist for the 2008 Jim Thorpe Award, which is given annually to the nation’s top defensive back, earlier in the season.
Goddard tied for second on the team with 59 tackles last year, while forcing three fumbles (tied for second in the ACC) and intercepting two passes. His five pass break-ups led the Tar Heels in 2007.
Goddard missed the 2006 season because of a broken foot.
In 2005 he finished with 53 tackles and three interceptions. He also broke up five passes and recovered a fumble.
Goddard played in every game his freshman season in 2004, recording 16 tackles.
While Goddard will play in the upcoming bowl game, which will be announced at a later date, his football career isn’t likely to end then. He has plans to play in the NFL.