NEW YORK, NY-- Former two-time All-SEC linebacker Jonathan Goff became the third Vanderbilt Commodore to be selected in the 2008 NFL Draft when the Super Bowl champion New York Giants chose the 6-foot-2, 245-pounder with the 30th pick in the 5th round on Sunday.
Chosen 165th overall in the entry draft, Goff joins a Giants defense that ranked among the leaders in the National Football League last season and made a historical run through the NFL playoffs before upsetting the then undefeated New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII.
However, the National Football Conference Eastern Division team recently lost starting linebacker Kawika Mitchell and reserve Reggie Torbor to free agency.
During a four year career at Vanderbilt, Goff registered over 300 total tackles with 15.5 tackles resulting in a loss, 6.5 sacks, three interceptions, three forced fumbles and hurried the quarterback 13 times.
The Massachussets native capped off his Commodore career in 2007 with a career high 113 total tackles and was selected first-team All-SEC by the league coaches and second-team by the league's media.
Overall the middle linebacker made 39 straight starts for the Commodores while earning his degree in mechanical engineering.
Goff's selection continues a trend for the Vanderbilt program as he becomes the ninth linebacker from the Commodore program to be selected in the NFL draft since 1985. Several of those picks such as Jamie Duncan, Matt Stewart, Jamie Winborn and Hunter Hillenmeyer, went on to have lengthy NFL careers.
Goff was twice voted by his teammates to wear the "KD 1" patch, in honor of former teammate Kwane Doster, who was murdered in December of 2004.
"Jonathan is a physical, tough-nosed player who works hard to improve every time he takes the field," says Vanderbilt head coach Bobby Johnson. "He's a tremendously productive player on the field. Off the field, Jonathan is just a model student-athlete, a guy that has as just as much pride in his academic achievement."
The two-year Commodore captain joins fellow former 'Dores Chris Williams and Earl Bennett as 2008 NFL Draft selections through five rounds. Two-year starting defensive end Curtis Gatewood and multi-year starting linebacker Marcus Buggs are also possibilities in Sunday's final two rounds.