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L-P to LT, and back

Discussion in 'Latest Chargers News & Headlines' started by robdog, Dec 16, 2005.

  1. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

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    Source: <a href="http://pjstar.com/stories/121605/NFL_B8DD00KO.074.shtml" target="_blank">PJStar.com</a>

    By RYAN ORI

    <img src="http://www.bolttalk.com/images/goff02.jpg" class="right" alt="Mike Goff" />Mike Goff visits his alma mater enough for current LaSalle-Peru High School athletes to know the eighth-year NFL player.

    San Diego Chargers fans get acquainted with the 6-foot-5, 311-pound starting right guard by word of mouth.

    The Peru native, who might become a chef after his playing days, shares his love of cooking by contributing recipes that run in the Chargers' magazine at every home game.

    "That's something that makes me feel good," Goff said. "I'll be out on the field getting ready for a game and people will tell my how much they enjoyed one of my recipes."

    Fettuccine Alfredo with a Cajun chicken breast was one recent recipe that drew positive reviews from Chargers fans. Another was beans with beer bread.

    Linemen bond during occasional visits to Goff's house for dinner. Goff learns tips from cooking shows and also through time in the kitchen with his mom, Jean Greening of Peru, who visits San Diego for every home game.

    On the field, Goff has been an ingredient in San Diego's turnaround in 2004 and '05.

    Goff, who played at Iowa from 1994-97 after his days at L-P, spent his first six NFL seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals. He was their third-round draft pick in 1998.

    Before the 2004 season, Goff signed with a Chargers team coming off a 4-12 season. The five-year deal was worth about $13 million.

    In his first season away from the Midwest, Goff was part of San Diego's 12-4 run and playoff appearance. This season, the Chargers are 8-5 and in a battle to return to the postseason - starting with Sunday's noon game at undefeated Indianapolis, which will be televised locally on CBS.

    Goff is the only Chargers offensive lineman who has started every game this season. He is three games away from wrapping up three straight 16-start seasons.

    San Diego's offense ranked 10th in the NFL last season and is No. 8 this year.

    It doesn't hurt to have LaDainian Tomlinson, perhaps the best active player, on your side.

    "When you've got a running back like LT back there, it makes your job easier," Goff said. "You give him a little gash and he can make something really big. He's a lot like Barry Sanders in that way."

    Tomlinson's 41-yard touchdown run ended the Chargers' 23-17 overtime victory at Washington in Week 12. Goff was credited with the block that freed Tomlinson.

    "I just wanted to win," Goff said. "I was thinking, 'I hope we score, because I'm really tired.' "

    L-P football coach and athletics director Greg Sarver said Goff never has grown tired of helping his high school.

    Goff comes home every March for the L-P booster club's draw-down fund-raiser and each July for the booster club's golf outing. In addition to providing items such as jerseys, footballs and photos, Goff regularly makes financial contributions to the school.

    New sports facilities and equipment have been purchased with some of Goff's NFL earnings.

    "I've been very blessed," Goff said. "Some people's careers are very short. I've been fortunate to be able to stay in the league for a while."

    Last February, the four L-P alums who have played in the NFL - the late Mike Kasap (Baltimore Colts, 1947), Joe Rutgens (Washington Redskins, 1961-69), John Skibinski (Chicago Bears, 1978-81) and Goff - were honored at a basketball game and had their football jerseys hung in the gym lobby.

    "It's good for the kids to see these guys," Sarver said. "When Mike's in town, he's around, working out. So the kids know him.

    "He's very proactive. We can't say enough about him. He's helped us a lot of ways, and he's a terrific role model."
     

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