Notre Dame Wide Receiver Visits Grade School Alma Mater (VIDEO & PHOTOS)

By Emma Koch
By Stephanie Parkinson

March 14, 2013 Updated Nov 9, 2013 at 12:46 AM EDT

Fort Wayne, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) - Former Notre Dame Football player and Bishop Dwenger Star John Goodman was given a warm welcome when he returned to his roots Thursday.

Goodman spoke with the students at his grade school alma mater, St. Jude Catholic School, in Fort Wayne.

"It's amazing. It's the best experience because my family has always been big about Notre Dame,” said Kate Hull, 8th grader.

The Notre Dame wide receiver was part of the resurgence that took the university to their first national title game in more than 20 years. He is known locally for leading the Saints to an undefeated regular season after stepping up as quarterback his senior year.

As he talked to the students about his achievements he stressed the importance sports can play.

"Being an athlete helped me to progress as a person and as an athlete, as a student because I got involved and because I was doing things,” said Goodman.

"Just getting to hear that someone great was from our school and that he achieved all these things and that's someone to look up to,” said Jacob Svarckopf, 7th grader.

Goodman may have gone from gym class at St. Jude to the football field at Notre Dame but one message he wanted to push home with the children is that everyone's road to success is different.

"If you just follow it and stick to it, and walk by faith and not by sight then you can do whatever you want to do,” said Goodman.

He reminded all of the kids to hold on to their dreams.

"Hard work, believing in themselves, and keeping faith and focusing on following your dream because that's what I did and that's where I am at today. My dream was to play at Notre Dame, for as long as I can remember, and that's what I did,” said Goodman.

So what's next for Goodman? He says he’s currently training with Athletes With Purpose in Fort Wayne, and hopes to play in the pros.

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