There is a game the offensive starters at Cascade Christian play in the football huddle before each snap.
It is called, “Guess Which Play Offensive Coordinator Brian Flattum Will Call Next?”
“(Receiver) Josh Seaton is the best at it,” Cougars quarterback Jaelin Goldsmith said. “He is a former quarterback. He usually gets nine out of 10 plays right.”
And Goldsmith, the four-year starter and leader in the huddle?
“Probably seven of 10,” he said.
The Cougars will take 70-percent accuracy from their senior any time in games, whether it is in the huddle guessing or standing in the pocket delivering passes.
As top-ranked Cascade Christian prepares for its Class 1A title-game showdown Saturday morning with Colville, Goldsmith’s decorated career (nearly 7,000 career passing yards, 80 touchdowns) has come full circle.
He is no longer the wide-eyed, wildly inconsistent signal caller who took over the reins of the offense as a ninth grader — one who capped his first season by throwing four interceptions in the Cougars’ 28-7 loss to Connell in the 1A championship game in 2011.
He is now one of the team’s confident captains and undisputed leader who not only is more refined technically, he has the entire playbook at his disposal.
“He’s always had a high-football IQ about concepts and spacing in the offense,” Flattum said. “Now being a four-year guy, and being the athlete he is, he has fully developed the other parts of his game.”
Goldsmith — the son of former Mount Tahoma High School and University of Oregon standout Vince Goldsmith — is easily putting together his best season now. He is completing 67 percent of his passes (100 for 150), and has thrown for a career-high 1,834 yards and 18 touchdowns in 12 games.
And he is playing his best football late in the state playoffs.
The Cougars got a scare in their first-round game against Hoquiam when Goldsmith took a helmet to his knee during a short touchdown run. He ended up suffering a deep bruise.
The injury has limited his quarterback option running the past two games. At the same time, his passing has never been more on point.
Against King’s in the quarterfinals, Goldsmith completed 13 of 15 passes for 189 yards and two touchdowns, running the short passing game to near perfection.
And last week against Eatonville in the semifinals, he was landing 50-yard deep passes right in stride with receiver Bryce Powers. He finished with 235 yards and four touchdown passes.
Then you hear him talk about his numbers, and he shifts the conversation to fulfilling what his team needs.
“This (quarterback) position is not always based on (play) audibles and checkdowns,” Goldsmith said. “It’s about leadership and trust — trusting your coaches when you might not always see what they are seeing with the game plan, or trusting the linemen to block, and trusting receivers to go get the football.”
And now he gets another shot at a state title — in the same building he debuted on the big stage in 2011.
“As coach (Randy Davis) says. ‘Football will exalt you in the moment, and humble you in a heartbeat,’ ” Goldsmith said. “That (2011) game really opened up my eyes to what hard work really is, which is all based on you, your character and integrity.”