19 in 19: RB Ben Martin

Running back Ben Martin became the 12th member of Greg Schiano's 2011 recruiting class when he committed in August last year. ScarletReport.com caught up with No. 4 in our "19 in 19" series to discuss his progress since his senior-season injury and thoughts on offense or defense on the next level.

At Rutgers' camp last year, running back Ben Martin turned a lot of heads when he ran a 4.39 40-yard dash. It was good enough to land him a scholarship offer.

Martin committed to Rutgers over Marshall less than a month later and started mentally preparing for college immediately thereafter.

"Of course it's a really exciting time for me," Martin said. "I came up for RutgersFest and had a great time because I knew that would be my home. I can't wait to be back."

Martin said he was not anywhere near the highly-publicized, negative aspects of the final RutgersFest in Piscataway and the event only made him want to get to college faster.

Martin is academically cleared and will enroll in June, 12 days after he graduates from Absegami High School (Absecong, N.J.).

"I'm really just looking forward to enjoying the college life," Martin said. "Everyone tells me how much fun that I can have, plus I'm playing college football. I have some big things that I want to do."

In his final month of preparation, Martin said he would like to add a little more weight before he enrolls. The 185-pound running back said Rutgers likes him closer to 195 pounds, but a fast metabolism is holding him back.

"I'm following their plan the best I can," Martin said. "It's hard to get to 195, but it's doable. I can't wait for that dining hall after all I've heard about it."

The running back was ineffective in his senior season with Absegami because of an ankle injury. The ankle, however, is 100 percent now, he said.

Until Martin enrolls, he said he will be in the gym because he knows staying in shape is the best way to find the field.

"Right now, it's just hard work and a chance to play," Martin said. "Everyone wants to play right away. It's a hard adjustment because everyone was a superstar at high school and no one wants to go from superstar to sitting on the bench."

Running back is what Martin wants to play, but he is not sure.

Talks with coaches since Martin's commitment did not center on position placement, he said. And with his speed and the additions of Savon Huggins and Paul Canevari to the backfield later in the recruiting process, he may find more playing time at defensive back.

"I have no idea where they'll play me," Martin said. "I'm willing to try whatever to help but I think I want to play running back."

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