There’s little doubt Adrian Martinez’s senior year has been frustrating as the elite quarterback stood on the sidelines all season recovering from labrum surgery. But, the national level recruit who holds 26 Division I scholarship offers was all smiles on Nov. 29 as the Clovis West star was honored at a ceremony on campus and received his jersey for the 2018 Under Armour All-America Game.
“It’s truly an honor to stand here and it’s a dream come true,” Martinez said. “There’s much more to accomplish but I’d really like to thank my teammates for helping me to get where I’m at, as well as my family.
“There have been so many people who have contributed to this moment, I can’t stand here today and act like it’s been me who earned this all by myself.”
Martinez, rated by ESPN as the No. 32-ranked prospect overall and the No. 3-ranked pocket-passing quarterback, passed for 2,562 yards and 25 touchdowns and ran for 1,435 and 14 more in 12 games last year.
Most notable, though, is Martinez the person, the one who attended every available practice and helped coach on the sidelines during games despite his injury. Just ask Clovis West head coach George Petrissans what he has meant to the program the past four years.
“It’s been a blessing to have been a part of coaching Adrian,” Petrissans said at the ceremony. “He’s a tremendous athlete – we all know that – but it’s been a blessing more to get to know Adrian. As good an athlete as he is, we all know him as a person too; he’s humble and one of the most intelligent players we’ve had the ability to coach. The sky’s the limit and I’m just so proud of him.”
A surprise award was given to Adrian’s father, Tony, who was chosen to receive the American Family Insurance Dream Champion Award given to the person most responsible for helping a player reach his dream.
“My dad has been there for me through everything,” Martinez said. “He’s always had my back and has been a role model for me my whole life. I aspire to be the man my dad is.”
The game features 90 high school seniors from all over the United States and is scheduled for Jan. 4, 2018 at Camping World Stadium in Tampa, Florida. It will be broadcast on ESPN2.
Former selections include NFL stars Julio Jones, AJ Green, Amari Cooper, Jameis Winston and Leonard Fournette – and there were 10 total first round selections in the 2017 NFL draft alone.
Martinez started at quarterback his sophomore year when he received his first college offer from Fresno State but burst on the national scene last December after attending the Under Armour Future 50 camp in Florida, one of only eight quarterbacks invited.
Then the offers started to flow; everyone from Alabama to Arizona, Georgia, Miami, Oklahoma, Nebraska and Tennessee were clamoring for the chance to land the coveted recruit. Martinez verbally committed to Tennessee on May 12 but since then head coach Butch Jones was let go, thus throwing his future into flux. He is now open to other schools.
He recently took an official visit to Ohio State on Nov. 11 and Nebraska the weekend of Dec. 8-9.