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February 10, 2019

Goossen beginning a new chapter with Delta Police Department

Matthias Goossen (61) in game action during the preseason game vs the Edmonton Eskimos June 15, 2017.

Matthias Goossen is in a transition phase in his life, both literally and figuratively.

Recently retired from the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the prime of his career – the 26-year old centre was named to the Canadian Football League All-Star Team last fall – Goossen will soon start the next phase in his life as a member of the Delta Police Department.

“Officially, I start in May,” began the Richmond, B.C. product in a recent chat with bluebombers.com. “And so right now my wife and I are busy packing up all our stuff here in Winnipeg to make the move.”

Goossen’s retirement became official last week, catching the Bombers fan base by surprise, but not the club’s football operations department. He had indicated to the coaching/management staff last year that he was pursuing a career in the police force and the stars have aligned perfectly for him to take that step.

 

“This is something I had been thinking about and praying about a lot, dating back to early last year,” Goossen said. “I wanted to approach it methodically and look at all sides with a long-term goal in mind. I wanted to make the decision with some clarity, not based on just one thing. There were a lot of discussions with my wife and family, too, and then the process started. (The Delta Police Department) made it really easy for me and were accommodating of my schedule while I made sure I was 100 percent committed to the team. That never changed in all this.”

Goossen’s approach to this decision – one of the most important in an athlete’s career – mirrors the approach he took to the football, and more specifically, his own game. He brought the required toughness that all O-linemen need to survive in the trenches, but was also a tireless student of the game who spent as much time studying film as he did in the gym keeping his body right.

All this means that Goossen is in a good place right now. He’s comfortable with moving on from football at 26, and at the same time, eager to start the next phase.

“This is something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. It’s something I always wanted to do post-football,” he said. “I’ve thought about this from the day I first got drafted, that this is what I wanted to do long term. I don’t know how to explain it, but I just knew this was the right time for me. Once I came to that conclusion there was nothing that was going to change my thinking that this is the path I would take.

“A lot of people wonder, ‘Why now?’ I could have played a lot longer and football is something I really, really enjoyed doing. But it’s not something I was going to do for the rest of my life and this is a long-term career for me.”

Goossen has been on ride-alongs with the Delta Police Department in past offseasons and those experiences only helped reinforce his desire to pursue a career with the force. His hours and hours of community work representing the Bombers during his five years in Winnipeg also helped him further understand his desire to give back.

“It’s difficult to leave an organization that’s been great to me, and all to those great teammates,” Goossen said. “There’s really not a finality to it, because I will keep in touch with these guys and see them when they come through B.C. What’s tough is it was just so much fun to be with those guys, especially the guys on the O-line. We had a closeness and camaraderie and that’s going to make it tough to move on. But I wanted to prepare myself for a life after football because, in the grand scheme of things, our lives in football are pretty short. Our bodies have only a certain amount of capital that we can use playing the game.

“I’m excited about starting a new part of my life and moving on to a new challenge.”

And, coincidentally, the Bombers open their 2019 season with a visit to Vancouver to face the B.C. Lions.

“Oh, I’ll be there,” said Goossen with a chuckle. “I’ll be there in all Blue Bombers gear.”