Flanked by 17 of his of his teammates, Friendship Collegiate defensive lineman Eddie Goldman, one of the nation’s most coveted recruits, announced his decision to attend Florida State, a decision years in the making.

Often a person who shuns the spotlight, Goldman, a massive 6-foot-4, 315-pound senior, sported a broad smile as he announced his choice, picking the Seminoles over finalists Alabama and Auburn.

“I went back and forth with my decision,” he said. “But I think I’m happy with my decision.”

Goldman, who said the difficulty of the decision ranked as a “10” on a scale of “one to ten,” said he was excited to be surrounded by a talented Florida State recruiting class.

“Conference didn’t play a role in this at all,” he said. “I was trying to pick the school that was best for me.. . .

“I know the [Southeastern Conference] is like the NFL almost. But I gotta do what I wanna do. Going to the SEC would have been good but I wouldn’t have been happy not at Florida State. The ACC puts kids in the NFL, too.”

And after he announced his choice and answered a few questions before a national television audience, Goldman finished with a “Go ‘Noles” and a trademark Tomahawk chop with right arm.

A consensus top ten recruit and first team All-Met, Goldman has approached the college recruiting process with a quiet confidence. His dominance on the offensive and defensive lines has contributed to him receiving over fifty college scholarship offers. Imposing force graded out at better than 90 percent each week. On defense had 23 tackles for loss with 15 sacks.

One of the biggest factors in Goldman’s decision to pick Florida State was his strong bond with his recruiter, Odell Haggins, the Seminoles’ defensive line coach.

“He just connected with my family so well and with me,” Goldman said. “And he’s a coach that’s been doing it for a long time and he has a lot of experience. And I think he can better me as a man and a football player.

The fact that Florida State finished 9-4 this season despite amassing among the top recruiting classes in the nation over the past few years Goldman said wasn’t a deterrent.

When Goldman got a chance over the past few weeks to quietly ponder his choice alone, he said he began to realize that Florida State was the best choice for him. A handful of times he told his father that he had decided on the Seminoles, only to waiver some later. But recently, he started to feel more comfortable with choosing the Seminoles, adding he was entirely confident in his decision.

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View Photo Gallery: Good Counsel’s Stefon Diggs, Friendship Collegiate’s Eddie Goldman, Potomac’s Ronald Darby and other football players around the region will make their college commitments official by signing letters-of-intent this month.