Categorized | Features

Coach Go makes lasting impact on football players and students

By: Ethan Burch


Tom Goforth

Goforth in his Pheonix classroom Picture by Ethan Burch

Tom Goforth is a teacher and Varsity football Coach at WHS. Born in the City of Bluefield, West Virginia, Goforth, also known as Coach Go, started his football life in little league where he would end up playing for 16 years total. Goforth realized he might want to become a teacher while in high school in a chemistry class. This teacher taught a different way and made Goforth realize how fun learning and school actually was. It was at that moment he decided he wanted to become a teacher.

He graduated from his High School and moved on to Bluefield State College, a small school in West Virginia. It was there that Goforth double majored in Health/P.E and English. When he got out of college, Goforth coached and taught at Richlands high school for 3 years. From there he went to Tazewell High School for 7 years and then to Stuarts Draft, where he spent 23 years. Goforth decided it was the end of the road for his coaching career, so he retired from Stuarts Draft and from coaching.

The fire and desire of coaching in his heart hadn’t died down since Draft, so Goforth decided to coach at Riverheads for a year. While coaching at Riverheads, Goforth was in the talks  with our own Coach Derek McDaniel, head varsity football coach, about coming to coach for WHS. Goforth  took the offer once a position at Phoenix, which is a learning program for students who need to learn in a different environment outside the classroom, opened. McDaniel told Goforth that he could make a difference to our football program. McDaniel explained Coach Goforth’s “experience, his wisdom , his ability to bond with players” was his decision to bring Coach Go to Waynesboro. “He has a really good rapport with kids and he’s a great coach,” said McDaniel “He’s a good teacher of the game, teaches life lessons he’d be nothing but a positive influence on our kids. Seriously, he’s pretty good.”

Since then Coach Go has worked at WHS for 4 years. Many students at WHS look up to Goforth, which he says  “put(s) more pressure on [him] to set a good example.“ 

Goforth is the kind of person you can go to if you had something wrong either as a football player or just a student. He has had students return to check in and see the Coach that made an impact on their lives. One of his students, Brendan Burch, who is currently deployed in the army and played football in college said “I will never forget the things that Coach Go taught me. He helped me on and off on the field.” 

Goforth Plans on retiring soon to pursue a new career. “Education is leaving guys like me behind.  I have always been more interested in the kid, not necessarily the subject or technology.”


Leave a Reply