Commit Catchup: Absegami RB Ben Martin

Absegami High (Absecon, N.J.) running back Ben Martin, who committed to Rutgrs in August, started the season with a 134-yard effort against Egg Harbor Township High, but injured his ankle a few weeks later. Martin updates about his injury, his timetable for a return, and what he learned by being on the sidelines.

Rutgers commit and Absegami High (Absecon, N.J.) running back Ben Martin didn't hesitate when describing his excitement in returning from the sprained ankle that kept him out of last week's win against previously unbeaten Vineland.

On a scale of 1 to 10?

"My excitement level is at 20 right now," Martin said. "I'm jumping around on the field during practice and going hard. I'm really excited to get back on the field Friday."

Absegami travels to Mainland Regional High (Lindwood, N.J.), and Martin anticipates playing a big role.

"I practiced full contact and everything was fine," Martin said. "I'm going to try my best and if I feel I cannot perform, I'm going to come out of the game."

The 5-foot-10, 185-pound Martin, who blistered the stop watches at Rutgers camp in June by running 4.39 seconds in the 40-yard dash, opened the season in style with 134 yards on 20 rushes in a season-opening win against Egg Harbor Township High.

He ran for 47 yards in a loss to Holy Spirit High a week later, than suffered an ankle injury early in week 3 against Atlantic City when an opposing defensive lineman fell on his ankle. Martin sat out last week's 10-0 win against Vineland, and learned plenty about coping with an injury and not playing.

"It's very frustrating," Martin said. "Last week when I was watching my team go out there, even during the pregame, it was crazy because I just wanted to be out there with my teammates."

"It made me realize it's a privilege and it can be taken from you in a matter of seconds, and you should be grateful you even have the opportunity to play football."

However, Martin tried to make the best of it and was constantly talking to teammates during the game.

"If somebody has a bad play, I tell them to keep their head up," Martin said. "If they're having a long run, I'll tell them how to avoid the last tackler. It made me realize that it's more than a game. It's like a family, and I feel that every person on the team is like my brother. I got a feeling like everyone on the team was my brother."

Martin is yet to attend a Rutgers game this season, but he remains in close contact with the coaching staff.

"I was going to go to the North Carolina game, but that is when I got the injury and couldn't walk at the time so I couldn't go," Martin said. "I haven't had the opportunity to watch them (on television), but I know they're 2-2. They check in every couple of days and see how the ankle is coming along. It's mostly small talk."

Scarlet Report Top Stories