Martinek Making His Presence Felt

It seems like every time Joe Martinek is given a chance to show what he can do, he always makes the most of it. When Greg Schiano decided to put the ball in his hands for a career-high 21 carries, he posted a career day in Rutgers 49-16 win over South Florida.

There's no question that Rutgers' passing game has improved greatly from the beginning of the year and is clicking on all cylinders. The running game has also made strides and is a big factor in the Knights offensive outburst the past few games.

Following a career day by Kordell Young against Syracuse, Joe Martinek had a breakout game of his own.

On a career-high 21 attempts, Martinek rushed for a personal best 98 yards - Rutgers was two yards away from having its third different 100-yard rusher - and two touchdowns in the win.

"It felt great to get a majority of the reps, it felt like old times," he said. "I was just trying to help the team win, and it's a great feeling to get the win afterward."

Martinek has to prepare differently than other backs. While he said he knew beforehand that he would be getting more carries in Tampa, his workload has varied throughout the year. Because he always has to be on-call for the next time his number might be called, he said he's constantly going over plays during the week and while he's on the sideline to stay sharp.

"I'm just always watching film and going over the playbook," he said. "Every little detail the coaches say, I'll just pick up on. Even when you're not in, just pay attention and go through the rep in your head. I'm just always trying to be prepared because you never know what can happen."

What's been special about Martinek's year is whenever he's been given an opportunity; he's left it all on the field. He only got two carries against the Orange because Young was tearing it up, but one of those two plays went for 45 yards. Against the Midshipmen, he rushed for 61 yards on eight carries. He'll tell you the reason for that is the group of people he's surrounded with on the team.

"I'm blessed with the team around me and the coaches because they just put me in position to make plays," he said.

Martinek isn't sure what his playing time will be against Army on Saturday, but he'll be ready when his number's called.

"I'm just going to keep doing what I've been doing every week," he said. "If they decide to give me a bunch of carries, I'll try to do the most with them."

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