The 23rd commitment of Nebraska’s 2013 recruiting class is a familiar name: Martinez. That’d be Drake Martinez, younger brother of Husker quarterback Taylor Martinez. Husker Online first reported the news. Drake and Taylor’s dad, Casey Martinez, confirmed the commit to The World-Herald via email.
Drake is a 6-foot-2, 200-pound athlete who played at Laguna Beach (Calif.) High School. Taylor, you’ll recall, prepped at Corona Centennial his senior season. A three-star prospect according to Rivals and Scout, Drake Martinez is slated as a safety, but could play running back or wide receiver in a pinch.
“I’ll play anywhere," Martinez told the Orange County Register. "Wherever I can get on the field fastest at the next level. I’m playing (running back) just to play it right now. I can play it at the next level, I believe. But my main goal is on defense. I think that’s the best spot.”
Because the Martinez family prefers to keep the recruiting process quiet, it’s unclear just how many offers Drake Martinez had, but San Diego State, Michigan State, Vanderbilt and a few others were among them. He’d recently visited the Spartans, who were roasted by Taylor Martinez in the Huskers’ 28-24 win last November.
“He’s every bit as fast as his brother," Laguna Beach coach Mike Churchill said. "He’s a lot like Taylor. Quiet. Nothing phony about him.”
Drake Martinez ran for 1,613 yards for Laguna Beach last year. He scored 34 touchdowns — seven of them on kick returns. He was named All-County by the Orange County Register.
Our take: Critics of Taylor at quarterback always claimed he should have played safety; although their concerns have largely been unfounded, they might find out what it would have been like. Drake could stand to add a little weight, but he has the frame and breakaway speed to be a potentially electric player for the Huskers on defense. He’s likely to enter fall camp as one of the 10 or 15 fastest players on the roster. If Nebraska coaches think he can handle it, he could be an immediate asset on special teams blocking kicks and serving as a gunner on the punt coverage team. Drake Martinez is, like his brother once was, one of the most intriguing recruits in the class.
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WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING:
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Photo Credit: The Laguna Beach Independent