Ryan Goodman has a relationship with Doug Colman that goes back a decade, to when Goodman was a senior quarterback at Absegami High School and Colman was in his first season as the Braves' head coach.
That tie took another turn Friday, when Coastal Carolina University head coach Joe Moglia chose Goodman to replace Colman, who has taken a job as an assistant coach with the Houston Texans, as the Chanticleers' linebackers coach.
Goodman spent the previous two years as a coaching intern at Coastal Carolina.
"I owe a lot to Coach Colman," Goodman said Friday in a phone interview from Coastal Carolina's campus in Myrtle Beach, S.C. "Coaching in college is a lot about who you know in this business and developing connections. Doug has been a huge help to me and has had a lot of influence on me. He's the reason I'm (coaching at Coastal Carolina) in the first place."
Colman, who was not available for comment, has joined new Texans coach Bill O'Brien's staff as their assistant special-teams coordinator, Coastal Carolina said in a story on its website.
Colman, who grew up in Ventnor and is an Ocean City High School alumnus, spent five seasons in the NFL as a linebacker and special-teams player with the New York Giants, Tennessee Titans and Cleveland Browns.
"I spoke with him the other day, and he couldn't have been more excited for me," Goodman said. "And coaching with the Texans is a great move for him and his family."
Goodman, who was The Press 2003-04 Male Athlete of the Year, joined Coastal Carolina in the fall of 2012 following two years as a graduate assistant coach at his alma mater, North Carolina State.
With the Chanticleers, he's been primarily responsible for helping the offensive coaches break down film of their opponents while also serving as a quality control coach.
"Ryan has been an invaluable member of our program the past two seasons," Moglia said in a statement. "Even though he has worked with the offense the past two years, his overall football knowledge, previous background on defense and chemistry with the current staff will make the transition at our linebacker coaching position seamless. He is well-respected on this staff, but more importantly, he has earned the respect of our players."
Goodman, a 2004 Absegami graduate, played quarterback for Colman as a senior in the fall of 2003 as part of an outstanding career in football and wrestling with the Braves.
Goodman, who is from Egg Harbor City and spent his freshman year at Middle Township, threw for 1,284 yards and 11 touchdowns as a senior and rushed for 588 yards and 11 TDs. The Braves went 7-4 that year and won the first state playoff game in program history.
"He really turned the program around at Absegami," Goodman said. "And I learned a lot of football from him."
Goodman was even more successful as a wrestler, winning two state championships. He won his final 72 matches and set the state record for career victories with 145, though that mark has since been broken. Former South Plainfield High School standout Anthony Ashnault set the current record of 170 last year.
Goodman initially played football and wrestled at the University of Nebraska, which is Colman's alma mater, before transferring to North Carolina State. He played safety and linebacker for the Wolfpack while also winning a pair of Atlantic Coast Conference championships as a wrestler.
"I did pretty well at Nebraska my first year, but they wanted me to pick one sport and I wasn't ready to do that," Goodman said. "And it worked out for the best because N.C. State's (former football) coach, Chuck Amato, had been a wrestler, so it made for an easy transition. And (Chicago Bears head coach) Marc Trestman was the offensive coordinator there at the time."
After spending two years at N.C. State as a grad assistant, Goodman sought another coaching opportunity and called Colman in the spring of 2011.
Colman, who had just joined Moglia's staff after two years at Tulane University, mentioned that an intern opening might be available and encouraged Goodman to apply for the position. Colman also had some input in Moglia's decision to give Goodman his old job Friday.
The only downside to the moves is that Colman and his wife, Colleen, will have to find a new babysitter for their son and three daughters.
"Besides being a coaching intern, I was also the unofficial babysitter for the coaches' families," Goodman said with a laugh. "So I spent a lot of time over at Doug's house. But spending a lot of time with him was a valuable experience. He's really helped me get to where I wanted to get to as a college coach."
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