Goodwin will take on Hibs on Saturday minus Ross and his assistant, John Potter, after the Easter Road club sacked their head coach on the back of defeat by Livingston.
Seven defeats in nine cinch Premiership matches meant Ross' previous record of finishing third last season and reaching at least the semi-finals of every cup competition – with a Premier Sports Cup final to come next week – counted for little in the eyes of Hibs owner Ron Gordon.
Goodwin played under Ross at Alloa and then succeeded him as Wasps manager before St Mirren came in to take him.
"First and foremost I am extremely disappointed for Jack," the Irishman said. "I have got a personal relationship with Jack, his assistant manager John Potter is an ex-team mate of mine and so is Craig Samson, who is goalkeeping coach there.
"I feel for Jack, it's a difficult position that he found himself in, not on a great run of form and probably a victim of his own success last season.
"Having done so well, I think the Hibs supporters and board, and Jack included, would have expected them to kick on after that and unfortunately it hasn't been the case."
Goodwin, whose side have not won in eight matches and sit two points below Hibs, added: "That's the industry that we are in. Every football manager knows you are only two or three games away from a crisis."