Former Cuero quarterback treasures memories of football career (VIDEO)
Oct. 16, 2013 at 5:16 a.m.
THE GOEBEL FILE
• HIGH SCHOOL: Cuero
• COLLEGE: Baylor
• NFL: Philadelphia Eagles, Cleveland Browns, Jacksonville Jaguars
CUERO - Brad Goebel was beginning to wonder what Larry Pullin was thinking.
Goebel's first start at quarterback for Cuero resulted in a 31-0 loss to Beeville, and he had thrown an interception in the end zone that was returned for a touchdown.
Goebel figured he might be moving back to receiver when Pullin approached him in the training room.
"He came up to me and said he had found his quarterback," Goebel said of the Cuero head coach. "He had seen something in me and he instilled the confidence in me to be successful."
Goebel led the Gobblers to a 27-7 win over San Antonio St. Gerard in the next game, and went on to post a 22-3 record as a starter.
"Brad was just a winner," Pullin said. "I had seen him in youth baseball and he would be the pitcher you would want to strike someone out to get out of an inning. I saw him do things in athletics when he was young to know he was a winner. He just had a knack of making a play and getting the job done."
Pullin's decision to make Goebel the starting quarterback after calling him up to the field house and watching him throw passes to Pullin's son and Goebel's teammate, Clay Pullin, paid off in a variety of ways.
Goebel led Cuero to the Class 3A regional playoffs as a junior before earning all-state honors and starting a run of three consecutive state final appearances as a senior in 1985.
Goebel went on to become the starting quarterback at Baylor, and spent five seasons in the NFL.
"It was one of those defining moments in my life and my career when coach Pullin pulled me up and had me throwing passes to Clay," said Goebel, who was inducted into the Gobbler Hall of Fame during halftime of Cuero's 24-20 win over Giddings last Friday night at Gobbler Stadium. "It obviously shaped my life and I'm thankful for it."
Goebel grew up thinking baseball would be his sport, but changed his mind after passing for a then Class 3A record 2,528 yards and 31 touchdowns as a senior.
He accepted a football scholarship from Baylor.
"It never really hit me until midway through my senior year when I started getting letters from colleges," Goebel said. "So much has changed in how the whole recruiting process works. You think you're at a small school and a big school would never find you. I felt like baseball was my calling. But coach Pullin told me all these schools wanted me for football, so why not take that.
"It was really a tough choice between Texas A&M and Baylor," he added. "I had been an Aggie all my life. I felt like with (head coach) Grant Teaff and (quarterbacks coach) Cotton Davidson, Baylor was the right place to go. It was a great decision that I made."
Goebel passed for 2,178 yards as a redshirt freshman - a Baylor freshman record that still stands - and was a consensus all-Southwest Conference selection.
Goebel had four different offensive coordinators, but went on to pass for a career-best 347 yards against Texas Tech as a junior.
He broke his hand against the Red Raiders and played sparingly as a senior.
"I never really thought much about playing pro football," Goebel said. "But I had some tryouts with teams and was able to sign a free agent contract with Philadelphia."
Goebel played in five games and started two as a rookie with the Eagles in 1991, was traded to the Cleveland Browns in 1992, before signing with the Jacksonville Jaguars where he finished his career in 1995.
Goebel, 46, currently resides in Marble Falls and works as a realtor for Horseshoe Bay Resort Realty, where he specializes in waterfront and ranch properties.
Goebel was joined at the induction ceremonies by his wife, Kristi, daughter Kylie, 14, and son Gage, 3.
Goebel asked Cuero coach Travis Reeve if he could address the team before the game, and was grateful for the opportunity.
"I just wanted to tell them what it meant to be a Gobbler and the memories I had," Goebel said. "I think fondly of my days in high school, my days in Cuero, and the memories and the relationships that I had and that's something you can't replace.
"I told those guys that's what it's all about. That's when a game is a game and it's so much fun. Just make the most of every opportunity and play every play like it's going to be your last. I was glad we were able to go out and get a victory."
Mike Forman is a sports writer for the Victoria Advocate. Contact him at 361-580-6588 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or comment on this column at www.Advosports.com