TE Ryland Goede Signs Zach Arnett to Mississippi State Football

STARKVILLE – Mississippi state football is coming to a close, and it comes in a package deal that benefits the volleyball program.

Georgia transfer Ryland Goede has announced his commitment to MSU via social media Monday. His fiancee Alexa Fortin, a transfer setter from UGA, announced she will join him in the move to Starkville.

“We’re both really, really pumped,” Goede said shortly after his commitment to the Clarion Ledger.

Goede and Fortin, who got engaged in March, were hoping to transfer to the same university. However, when Fortin entered the transfer portal in early December, Mississippi State was among the programs that spoke to her the most.

That was a problem for Goede because the state of Mississippi, which directed Mike Leach’s air raid offense, didn’t use a tight ending. They would adjust if they had to play at opposing schools, but chose not to make a rushed decision.

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The following weeks were packed. Goede watched his team claim their second straight national title. While Georgia was making the run, Mississippi State was going through a coaching change.

Zach Arnett was promoted from defensive coordinator to head coach following Leach’s unexpected death on December 12. A month later, Arnett hired Appalachian State offensive coordinator Kevin Barbay in the same role.

Barbay, whose tight end led App State to touchdown receptions last season, inherited a roster without a tight end. Suddenly Goede had the chance to come to Starkville.

He was visiting last weekend, returned to Georgia to confer with Fortin, and made his decision.

“I want to create a tight-end space that has a culture that is second to none and that is second to none,” Goede told Arnett. “My goal is to leave a legacy in the tight end space on and off the field that I hope will last for many years to come.”

Goede spent four seasons with UGA where he appeared in 19 games. After playing behind Brock Bowers and Darnell Washington — players he considers two of the best tight ends in college football history — Goede said he felt ready to take on a bigger role.

Goede spent much of his visit with MSU quarterback Will Rogers, whom he saw firsthand in Georgia’s win at Davis Wade Stadium on November 12 – an experience that is fresh in his memory.

“That would be a cool place for a kid to play,” recalls Goede.

Goede plans to graduate in Journalism and Mass Communications with a certificate in Sports Media in May in Georgia. His marriage and honeymoon to Fortin follow shortly thereafter. Then he will head to Starkville and prepare to have the cowbells on his side.

Stefan Krajisnik is the Mississippi State Beatwriter for the Clarion Ledger. Contact him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @skrajisnik3.

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