Martinez Willing To Wait

Ohio State has three verbal commitments from offensive linemen this year and are in the running for a fourth, but John Martinez is hoping to fit into the picture somewhere. Find out what he thinks of the Buckeyes, where he stands as far as a scholarship and what his plans are for the future in this update.

There are plenty of kids out there wishing for a scholarship offer from Ohio State. Not all of them are four-star offensive linemen already holding offers from the likes of USC and LSU, however.

That is the case for John Martinez, an offensive guard from Salt Lake City Cottonwood ranked by Scout.com as the No. 3 player in the country at his position. A 6-3, 270-pound athlete, Martinez is not lacking for offers from some of the top schools in the country.

But the Buckeyes are his leader, despite the fact that they have not yet offered him – so much so that Martinez is willing to wait on OSU until National Signing day if necessary.

"I like the campus a lot," Martinez told BuckeyeSports.com. "I liked all the coaches when I met them all. I love Coach (Jim) Tressel. He's a good guy. I like all their facilities and all that stuff."

Martinez and his father are in constant contact with OSU offensive coordinator and line coach Jim Bollman. Between them, they are working on setting up a trip for Martinez to come out and check out what the Buckeyes have to offer.

The conversation is different than when Martinez talks to other college coaches.

"It's just more of a non-football kind of thing," Martinez said. "He told me that he would like me to come over but it's more of a, ‘Hey, how are you? How's school? How's the family?' When I talk to other football coaches it's just about football."

Some of the conversation strays to the fact that Martinez is willing to wait on the Buckeyes. The situation is a hard one to maintain at times, he said.

"Yes and no," he said. "No because I know that if I hang in there I know it will be worth it and yes because I'm anxious. I already have a whole bunch of other offers, but I already like Ohio State. If I can just hang in there, we'll be good."

The Buckeyes have 24 verbal commitments for their class of 2009. Three are from offensive linemen, and they are waiting on a decision from five-star prospect Marcus Hall from Cleveland Glenville.

According to Martinez, the coaches are saying it is strictly a numbers game at this point.

"They said they are looking toward some other kids, but if they say no they'll for sure give me one," he said. "I was (surprised) at first, but then when they told me that they already had a whole bunch of other people that they offered then I understood."

Despite that desire to become a Buckeye, Martinez is not completely standing pat. This weekend will see him visit USC to watch the Trojans host Notre Dame, and the following weekend he plans to go check out UCLA.

After that, Martinez said he plans to be in contact with Bollman about setting up a visit to Columbus. He has already been to the OSU campus, and he has family and friends within the Buckeye State.

This season, Martinez helped lead Cottonwood to the state championship game, where his team lost by a 34-28 score. As a junior, he earned first-team all-state honors. He has been timed at 4.9 seconds in the 40-yard dash.

Martinez said his family members are supportive of his desire to wait on the Buckeyes, and he is in no hurry to make a final decision.

"I'll stay open for them," he said.


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