Schools Fishing For Martin

An avid fisherman with a love for the outdoors and nature, Chris Martin really enjoys the vacations from his Oakland, Calif., area home, to Bedford, Ind., to visit with family.

"In California, there is horrible fishing out here," Chris Martin stated with a laugh. "In Indiana, they'll bite over everything. And the people, the hospitality there, everyone is so nice."

College recruiters are already beginning to cast their lines in hopes of catching the 6-foot-4, 235-pound Martin.

Colorado was the first school to offer Martin, a class-of-2010 standout from Bishop O'Dowd High, a scholarship.

"It was real nice out there," Martin said. "I loved it out there. People tell me, don't fall in love with the first school that offers, and to take your time, but that is definitely going to be one of the schools I consider the whole time."

Since Dan Hawkins and the Buffaloes offered, Martin has added verbal scholarships from USC, UCLA, California, Stanford and Oregon. Juniors can't receive written scholarship offers until Sept. 1st, per NCAA recruiting rules.

A first-team sophomore all-state selection, Martin had 108 tackles, four sacks, three forced fumbles and two interceptions last fall, helping Bishop O'Dowd reach the state playoffs. The standout linebacker is hearing many different things about what position he could play on the next level.

"So far, I've been hearing middle linebacker to outside linebacker to defensive end," Martin said. "It's been crazy. People are calling me a tweener. When I was at USC's camp, coach (Pete) Carroll said they see me as a SAM linebacker or WILL, or even a weak-side defensive end because they were impressed with my pass rushing skills."

Martin is also hearing from Michigan, Florida, Clemson and Notre Dame. He puts the Irish among his early favorites.

"The rich tradition there," Martin stated. Irish assistant coach Jappy Oliver went by the school during the spring evaluation period, and Notre Dame has sent Martin some mail.

"It's full of tradition and you can tell too. I've always, it's kind of one of those things since I was younger, my dad always loved Notre Dame because he is from Bedford, Indiana, and I have family from back there. He always made me watch the Notre Dame games, and I started to watch them on my own. You can tell it's a powerhouse by the packets they gave me, I took the time to read them.

"It's a great school as well. It's the Stanford of the Midwest, except their program has been known as a powerhouse unlike Stanford's. Stanford is still trying to come up, but you know Notre Dame has been there for awhile."

Martin wasn't exactly sure how his father ended up in California, saying that he came out west on a trip with his buddies, met his mother, and never went back.

While Martin has all these California schools courting him, he won't be intimidated by possibly going away for school.

"Not at all, especially going to Notre Dame, it'd be perfect," Martin said. "Playing on the big stage at Notre Dame wouldn't be bad."

But a decision is a ways away for Martin.

"It's been a humbling experience so far really, it edges me to work hard.

"I definitely want to go somewhere I feel comfortable, and it feels like home for me. If I do decide to go away from home or go to California or wherever, I want it to feel like home to me because I will live on campus there. Academics, that's the big thing in my family, a school that is going to prepare me for life after football. And the last thing, early playing time. I understand it's hard work, hard earned, but I don't want to go to a places that has five or six players at linebacker that are freshmen and sophomores, and they'll be upperclassmen when I get there, on top of the other linebackers that may be there."

Martin, who has a 3.0 GPA, was invited to both of Notre Dame's camps this summer, but he was unable to attend. However, he could be seeing the Irish campus for the first time in the coming weeks.

"I have a week off, the week after next week, and we're going to try and fly out there, and we intend to go to Notre Dame," Martin explained. "That's going to be the purpose, to see Notre Dame and see some family.

And of course, do some fishing.


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