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Lower Merion’s Jalen Goodman signs NLI to play football at Villanova

Ardmore >> Lower Merion senior Jalen Goodman, a versatile performer on the football field for the Aces last fall, signed his National Letter of Intent Dec. 19 to play football for Villanova University.
Goodman was a first team All-Central League defensive back and a second team All-Central League tight end, catching 44 passes (12.0 yards per reception). He also was the Aces’ leading running back, gaining 278 yards rushing on 56 carries (5.0 yards per carry). On defense, he played strong safety and outside linebacker, making 61 tackles (10 for losses) and numerous pass deflections and causing four fumbles.
The 5-foot-11, 185-pound Goodman, who was a first team All-Main Line football selection this past fall, is anticipated to be used as a safety, possibly as a cornerback, for Villanova.
Goodman likes the creativity of the safety position.
“I like the fact that the majority of the time at safety, I’m free, depending on the defense we’re in,” said Goodman. “At cornerback I don’t get as many chances to sack people.”
Goodman is thinking of majoring in engineering or computer science at Villanova, but for now will be an undeclared major.
“I was at a camp at Villanova last summer, and I like how real and honest the Villanova coaches are,” said Goodman. “I like the campus, I like the facilities they have, and it’s a very good school, when I come out I’ll be able to get a good job; and I’ll even have a chance of going to the NFL.”
Goodman, who attended St. Margaret School as an eighth grader, joined the Lower Merion football team as a freshman, was sidelined as a sophomore with a back injury, then really started to come into his own as a junior, when he started at safety and wide receiver. An all-around athlete, Goodman ran track for Lower Merion last spring, and is playing basketball for the Aces this winter.
Approximately, 50 of Goodman’s friends and family members came to his signing at Lower Merion High School.
“I love the community that we have here at Lower Merion, I feel that everyone’s really supportive,” said Goodman. “I also like the academics we have here. The teachers here are always willing to help.”

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