Forrest Good competes in honor of a father he barely remembers.
He lines up every Friday night at guard for Nevada Union High School, an unsung cog for the third-ranked football team in Northern California.
Good gets giddy when talking about his craft, and only a lineman could appreciate discussion of hand placement, hip movement, footwork and trap plays.
"It's all about the linemen for the wing-T to work, and one mistake by us, and it all goes bad," Good said. "I live for this. I play for my team, my school, my family, my friends and for my dad. Always my dad. He'd love this team."
He'd love the guard, too. Good is a senior honors student who aspires to study science and chemistry in college. He won't play football after this fall, realizing there's not much of a market for 5-foot-10, 195-pound blockers. So it's no wonder Good plays every snap as if it means something.
Good's father, Bobby, died in 2002 from liver failure. A construction worker, the elder Good suffered with a broken body. He fell off a two-story building. He blew out discs in his back and crushed his shoulder. The job's grind also caused him to blow out a knee six times.
Good wonders about his father, who and what he was, and he found some closure to that query this summer. In talking to teammate Hank Humphers, they realized Good played at Mira Loma in 1982, the same time Humphers' father, Dave, got his coaching start. Dave Humphers now heads the Nevada Union program.
Good scrambled to find Mira Loma football game programs from his grandmother to connect the dots, then raced to the Humphers' house to connect some more. Coach Humphers did coach Bobby, and he recalled a tough, cooperative pupil. Bobby Good was a halfback who wore jersey No. 22.
"It was pretty emotional but neat at the same time," coach Humphers said. "We had no idea."
Said Good, "Pretty crazy. Coach Humphers knew my dad more than I knew my dad. He told me about side talks and motivational speeches he had with my dad. It was very powerful. This really makes it special for me. And coach Humphers said my dad would be proud of me, and that's the greatest compliment."
No. 62 in your Nevada Union program: The Good son.
A painful absence
Jonah Toma ignores pain and would lie to his mother and coaches about it. The Grant senior linebacker and team leader was a late scratch for the rivalry renewal game against Nevada Union on Friday because of a staph infection on his leg.
He broke down in tears when Grant coaches told him he had to sit, and they had to hide his helmet after he still dressed for the game.
Lane change is no biggie
Vicki Volek may be the brains and beauty of her football family, but she's not the most coordinated. The wife of retired Sierra College athletic director John Volek is sporting a cast on her right arm, having slipped and crashed while bowling. Still beat John left-handed, we're told.