long jump

Marquise Goodwin (84)anticipates a pass during the 2011 Holiday Bowl. He would finish the game with three receptions for 49 yards and one touchdown. Be

Photo Credit: Lawrence Peart | Daily Texan Staff

The Olympic athlete’s journey is a tough one.

Big league baseball players get 162 games a year, NBA players get 82 and an NFL regular season includes 16 games. An Olympian gets once chance every four years to show the world what they’re made of, to see if their 48 months’ worth of dedication and sacrifice has paid off.

Fortunately for Marquise Goodwin, he has football.

After becoming the first American since 1960 to win an NCAA championship in the long jump and come out on top in the U.S. Olympic Trials in the same event, Goodwin placed 10th in London. His personal best jump of 8.33 meters (27 feet, 4.25 inches), the distance he leaped in Oregon less than six weeks earlier, would have earned him gold if he matched it at the 2012 Olympics.

“Football is a huge stress reliever,” Goodwin said. “The transition, it is just great to be able to come back and not have to worry about if I would’ve done this or that. My mind is totally on football now.”

Goodwin is now in fall camp, preparing for this upcoming season and the Longhorns’ season opener against Wyoming Sept. 1. It will be the first season opener he’ll play in two years as he missed Texas’ win over Rice last year while trying to qualify for this summer’s Olympics in South Korea’s World Championships.

“There can’t be a better two-sport athlete in football and track & field in America than Marquise Goodwin,” Longhorns head coach Mack Brown said in a statement. “We’re so excited to have Marquise back. Here’s a guy who won the last two USA titles and two NCAA Championships in the long jump. He’s a guy who competed in the Olympics and had a chance to win a gold, he was our most valuable player in the bowl game last year and he’s always on the honor roll.”

Goodwin rejoined the Longhorns for their 17-16 win over BYU last year. As a junior, he caught 33 passes for 421 yards and four touchdowns, peaking toward the end of the season, catching five passes for 129 yards and a touchdown in a loss to Baylor in the regular season finale and making three grabs for 49 yards and a score in the Holiday Bowl triumph over Cal in December.

Unlike last year, Goodwin won’t be adjusting to a new offense or flying thousands of miles into Austin in the middle of the year.

“It was great to have him back,” junior cornerback Carrington Byndom said. “We all saw his performance, but it is good to have him back out there. We are going to need him.”

Now that Goodwin’s made the transition from the thrill of his first Olympic experience to the grind of getting ready of his final year with the Longhorns, he’s poised for a solid senior season. The leader of a young receiving corps, no Texas pass-catcher stretches the field better than the blazing-fast Goodwin.

“Words can’t even explain how it is to represent your country, having the words USA written across your chest,” Goodwin said. “But it is great to be back at football, to see my teammates and coaches. I am just glad to be back.”

Goodwin went on to describe his Olympic performance as the most crushing performance of his promising athletic career. He would not reveal his intentions for a possible pursuit of redemption at the 2016 Olympics in Brazil. If he does go for gold in Rio, thankfully, for his sake, he’s got football to keep him busy in the meantime. 

Men's Track & Field

The Longhorns proved to be a strong presence in the field events during competition at the annual Penn Relays in Philadelphia.

Senior Marquise Goodwin remained consistent with another win in the long jump. Goodwin won with a jump of 7.86 meters.

Jacob Thormaehlen claimed UT’s top spot in the championship division shot put with a throw of 19.6 meters for third place. Hayden Baillio finished in seventh with a mark of 18.75 and Ryan Crouser was tenth.

In the shot put college division, Will Spence won the title with a throw of 17.84 meters.

Spence and Crouser also represented Texas in the championship division of the discus throw. Crouser’s mark of 55.67 meters placed him fourth overall, while Spence finished five spots behind at ninth with a heave of 50.77.

Three Texas athletes competed in the college division of the discus throw. Freshman Blake Jakobsson was the top Longhorn among the leader board with a second place throw of 52.26 meters. Baillio finished two spots behind in fourth with a mark of 50.37. Thormaehlen’s throw of 49.10 placed him farther down the pack in 10th overall.

But Thormaehlen was able to regroup and attack the hammer throw at full force. His heave of 56.37 meters placed him third overall in the college division.

During Saturday’s 4x100-meter relay finals, Alex Williams, Goodwin, Mark Jackson and Trevante Rhodes ran the event together and came in fourth at 40.69 seconds.

While the relay group celebrated in Philadelphia, Longhorn distance runner Kevin Rayes was doing the same in San Marcos. Rayes, along with several other Texas runners, competed in the Texas State Bobcat Classic on Saturday.

In the 1500-meter run, Rayes clocked in a time of 3:56.43 seconds to win the event.

Printed on Monday, April 30, 2012 as: Goodwin leaps to another gold in long jump

Junior Marquise Goodwin will elect to redshirt during the 2011 football season in order to fulfill his dream of competing in the 2012 Olympics in London, England.

Photo Credit: Corey Leamon | Daily Texan Staff

Texas football doesn’t take a back seat to many things, but Olympic aspirations are one of them for Marquise Goodwin.

Goodwin, a junior wide receiver and school record-setting long jumper, will redshirt this upcoming football season to focus on training for the 2011 World Championships in South Korea, as well as for qualifying for the 2012 Olympics in London.

With a 27’4” jump, Goodwin captured the 2011 U.S.A. Outdoor Track & Field national title and qualified for the 2011 IAAF World Championships. That competition is set to be held from Aug. 27 to Sept. 4, meaning Goodwin was already likely to miss the Longhorns’ season opener Sept. 3 against Rice. Now he’ll miss the entire season.

“We are so proud of Marquise,” said football head coach Mack Brown. “What an unbelievable accomplishment to be the U.S. long jump champion and earn a spot in the World Championships, especially at such a young age. Obviously, he has established himself as one of the premiere long jumpers not only in America, but the world. With the World Championships coming up and the Olympics next August, his focus needs to be on track and field.”

Brown’s receiving corps will now have one less legitimate offensive threat. Over the past two seasons, Goodwin has caught 61 passes for 604 yards — including a 14-yard touchdown to beat Oklahoma 16-13 in 2009. He was Texas’ fifth-leading pass-catcher in 2010. Of the four players ahead of Goodwin, only Malcolm Williams (24 catches, 334 yards) and Mike Davis (47 catches, 478 yards) return.

Williams, the lone senior receiver, leads a group of young but promising wideouts, only four of whom have recorded a reception for Texas (Williams, Davis, junior DeSean Hales with 11, and sophomore Darius White with 1). It’s a group that will include four freshmen — two who redshirted in 2010 (John Harris and Chris Jones) and two true freshmen (Jaxon Shipley, Jordan Shipley’s younger brother and Miles Onyegbule). It’s also a group that did not include a receiver with more than two touchdown catches and one that must put up bigger numbers for Texas to improve upon their 5-7 showing last season. Goodwin will rejoin the team next fall.

“I can’t say thanks enough for the incredible support from Coach Brown, the whole staff and my teammates in this decision,” said Goodwin. “I’m still going to be around football as much as possible supporting them every step of the way next season and will be ready to go with two years left when I fully return. Until then, I’m looking forward to having a great year with [track and field head] Coach [Bubba] Thornton and my track and field teammates as I try to fulfill my dreams of bringing home gold to the United States and everyone at Texas.”

The World Junior Champion in both the long jump and 4x100m, Goodwin broke former Texas running back Eric Metcalf’s long jump record of 26’0” set in 1986 with a 26’8.5” leap at the Razorback Invitational Jan. 28. That 26’8.5” mark would have been good enough to crack the top eight at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. A jump around 26’11” would have been good enough to medal in 2008. Goodwin is now set to prepare to take his chances in the long jump in 2012. Coach Thornton will help him along the way.

“We are so proud of everything Marquise is accomplishing and look forward to getting him ready for the World Championships,” Thornton said. “The fact that Mack [Brown] and the football program care so much about him and his future, to let him focus on track and field, is a tribute to their unselfishness and love for Marquise and this university.” 

Starting college always means new experiences ­— new classes, new home, new friends. For the freshmen Longhorns, however, they knew they already had a support system and group of friends when they started at Texas.

Six of the seven new athletes — A’Lexus Brannon, Shanay Briscoe, Marielle Hall, Briana Nelson, Allison Peter and Danielle Dowie — met previously while competing in the 2009 IAAF World Youth Games in Italy.

Brannon, Briscoe, Hall and Nelson all represented the United States. Dowie represented Jamaica and Peter the U.S. Virgin Islands.

“I think it was the best international trip I’ve been on; everyone just meshed really well,” Briscoe said. “Whenever we came in, I knew everybody. I was excited because I knew when I came here, I knew I was going to already have friends.”

Brannon placed eighth at the World Games in the long jump, Briscoe placed eighth in the high jump, Nelson finished fourth in the 200-meter, and Dowie took home a silver medal in the 400-meter hurdles.

“Making the world youth and world junior team was a big deal,” Nelson said. “It was hard to make. It was a really great experience. It was really good because I knew everyone before I got here.”

Now, the freshmen are already contributors to the 18th-ranked Longhorns, who last competed in Houston and Fayetteville, Ark., on Jan. 28. Briscoe placed third in the high jump with a season-best clearance of 1.8-meters in Fayetteville for the Razorback Invitational.

Nelson also posted a season best of 24.13 seconds in the 200-meter race, placing 12th, and also placed fourth in the 400-meter.

Brannon finished 13th in the long jump, and Hall finished 11th in the 800-meter with a time of 2 minutes and 11.36 seconds.

Although having so many young contributors could be considered an issue for the team, members feel that it will actually provide an advantage.

“Everyone is looking to us to see what we are going to do next, and it’s definitely a motivator,” Briscoe said.

Briscoe and Nelson both said competing at a level like the world games prepared them for competition at the collegiate level. Still, it helps to know there are six other women who understand what they are going through. Many of the athletes live together in the dorms and spend much of their time together.

“They are pretty much like my sisters,” Briscoe said. “They are the ones I find myself clinging towards. We are all really close, and we have each others backs no matter what.”