Husker fans in the family

Our latest recruiting focus takes us to the Palmetto State as we catch up with Spartanburg standout Ronnie Martin. The 5-11, 170 defensive back was an all-purpose performer last year for his football team as he recorded two interceptions along with 33 tackles. But his prowess was also seen in the return game as he had a whopping four returns for touchdowns last year.

Martin recently received an offer from LSU which goes along with his offer from the Huskers. We caught up with him to talk a little about the Tigers, the Big Red and recruiting in general.

Big Red Report: How are things going for you right now?

Ronnie Martin: We just got done with the state meet. We got 10th overall and I kind of had a bad day. I know I ran around a 10.98 in the hundred, so it wasn't real good.

BRR: We know about the two offers you have right now. Who else have you been getting attention from, whether it's coming by the school, mail, etc.?

RM: Right now I know it's Alabama, Wake Forest and Florida just recently started mailing me.

BRR: Now, I am going to assume there's a certain amount of interest in both LSU and Nebraska. But are there any other teams out there who you are looking at strongly even though they haven't offered you as of yet?

RM: Before I got any offers, I really didn't think about anyone. I didn't think I would get recruited this soon. And some people just talk a lot and say a lot of stuff. They like tell you whatever you want to hear. So, I wasn't really paying attention to anyone until recently.

BRR: You obviously have good size and speed for a corner. Do you consider those your strengths?

RM: Honestly, put me wherever. I really don't care. Corner, receiver, running back – I'll do whatever I need to do. Schools look at me as a corner, a receiver or whatever. So, I don't care. Just put me on the field.

BRR: Were you being recruited by Nebraska or LSU for a specific position?

RM: LSU said that they wanted me for numerous positions. They wanted me as a corner, but it sounds like they want me to play all over the field, which is just fine with me.

BRR: There are a lot of players we have seen in just recent years who find themselves tagged as the all-everything types. DeSean Jackson when he was with Cal; Jeremy Maclin at Missouri; Reggie Bush at USC; A.J. Wallace at Penn State. Do you see yourself in that mold?

RM: I see myself as being another DeSean Jackson, to tell you the truth.

BRR: A dynamic player, to be sure. He loves to show off too.

RM: Well, I don't do that. I don't showboat. He loves what he's doing. So, I guess he shows it. But I just play the game, respect everyone the same and just do my thing.

BRR: Back to the speed a bit here, what's your best forty-time?

RM: I ran a 4.37 at the Shrine Bowl Combine

BRR: Nebraska was obviously your first offer. But being from the south did Nebraska surprise you at all?

RM: Well, it didn't surprise me. I mean, I have family that's Nebraska fans. Almost everyone on my Granddad's side is Nebraska fans. I don't know why. They just are. So, I knew about Nebraska. But I never expected to get one. So, yeah, I guess you could say I was surprised. But I was pretty happy too.

BRR: What was your reaction to the offer when you got it?

RM: I went crazy. I was amazed. I went to my mom, and she was always a big fan of that Suh guy from there, because he was always good. I told her I got an offer from them and she didn't believe me. But then I got the paper with the offer on it, and she knew it was legit. My little brother got excited about it too.

BRR: I'm curious about this following of sorts from the family in regard to Nebraska. Where does that come from?

RM: I don't know. I know my dad, all he would talk about is Nebraska. I can't tell you why. That was a school he wanted to go to when he was my age.

BRR: Who have you talked to from Nebraska?

RM: I talked to Coach Ted Gilmore, but I have always wanted to talk to Coach Bo. I have talked to Coach Gilmore, but every time I try to call Coach Bo, I can't ever get in touch with him. But if I can talk to him, I can tell him how I feel about Nebraska.

BRR: Nebraska's secondary gradually got the reputation last year of being very physical. They didn't lead the country in interceptions, but it seemed like they had created an identity of a very physical style of play. I know some corners don't necessarily like mixing it up on every play. How does that style fit how you approach the game?

RM: Coaches ask me what I like to do and I tell them I like to beat on receivers. The one thing a receiver doesn't like is when you get into them, push them around and throw them off their game. The bigger the receiver the better I like it, because they think they are going to push you around all day. And I get up to the line and I'm pushing them before they even have a chance. They don't like that. But that's me. That's how I play.

BRR: What do you have scheduled, if anything, in regard to camps or unofficial visits over this off-season?

RM: If I could talk to Coach Bo from Nebraska, I'd like to go there. And I am supposed to be going to LSU around June 6th.

BRR: Are there any other places you want to go?

RM: I am supposed to be going to Florida for their Friday Night Lights camp. And I think I am going to Alabama for a camp too.

BRR: When do you want to make your decision?

RM: I know I want to decide before October. I just want to see how everything goes.

BRR: That will give you about a month to take some of your allowed official visits. Are LSU and Nebraska locks to get official visits if you wait that long to decide?

RM: Oh yeah. I am definitely visiting both of them. I know that.

BRR: About LSU, they obviously have a great athletic tradition, they have won a national title recently and you probably get to see them on TV a fair amount. What else do you like about the Tigers?

RM: I look at the two of them (Nebraska and LSU) and how they compete. Nebraska competes hard and LSU has this thing where if their backs are against the wall, they can fight back like crazy.

BRR: Where is South Carolina in all this?

RM: I don't know. My coach says they came by, but I haven't really heard that they are asking about me all that much. So, I don't know what's going on with them.

BRR: Are there any other schools you want to throw out there are as genuine interest?

RM: Wake Forest and North Carolina are two other programs, because they have great academics.

BRR: What is your GPA right now?

RM: It's a 3.0

BRR: Have you taken your ACT or SAT yet?

RM: I am taking it on June 5th.

BRR: So, no favorites?

RM: Everyone is even right now. I am not going to put anyone out there as being at the top, because there's a lot I don't know about these programs. And I have to visit these places and talk to the coaches before I know all that much about them. So, nobody is standing out right now. They all look great, which makes it a tough decision I'll have to make at some point. But I'm not close to that at all right now.

We'd like to thank Ronnie for taking the time, and we'll catch up with him down the road as his recruiting will no doubt continue and more than likely pick up.


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