Fall Sports

T H U R S D A Y , A U G U S T 2 9 , 2 0 1 9 Bob Hamar, sports editor The Grand Island Independent www.theindependent.com N IN THIS SECTION: HUSKER FOOTBALL fall SPORTS preview 20 19 your GUIDE to fall sports in NEBRASKA C Coach, QB form tight bond For The Independent/Corbey R. Dorsey Nebraska coach Scott Frost (right) and quarterback Adrian Martinez have formed a strong relationship since Martinez joined the program in January of 2018. After Frost came to Nebraska, Martinez was right behind By Bob Hamar bob.hamar@theindependent.com This marriage between coach and quarterback came after a whirlwind courtship. Yes, they knew each other before, but the quarterback wasn’t interested in joining the coach at a smaller university. But when the coach got a job at a Power 5 Conference school, and one with a football tradi- tion that goes way back to boot, things changed. Now the quarterback was willing to take a look. The meeting took place shortly after Scott Frost was named head coach at the University of Nebraska. Frost flew out to Fresno, California, to meet with Adrian Martinez and his parents, Tony and Deanna Martinez. That meeting went well. “Within probably 10 minutes of my family meeting Coach Frost, they just knew that he was the type of guy they wanted me to be around,” Adrian Martinez said. “It was an important decision for me and I have a lot of faith in that guy. “I’m just so thankful to be coached by him, to have this opportunity to play here, to play under a guy who knows what it takes, has coached great quarterbacks, and had won a national championship here. I don’t think there’s a better combination of things for a coach to have here.” Martinez had previously been committed to the Univer- sity of California and then to Tennessee, but when it came time to sign on the dotted line, he became a Husker. Frost and quarterback coach Mario Verduzco wanted Martinez when they were coaching at Central Florida, but Martinez wanted to play at a Power 5 program. “When we watched Adrian on film when we were at UCF, he was our favorite quarterback in the country,” Frost said. “We were lucky to be in a situation to have a chance to recruit him when we got to Nebraska.” Martinez had it all. He could pass. He could run. He was smart and could process information in no time. And he was mature. Unbe- lievably mature for an 18-year- old freshman. “Getting to know him, you see his personality and his unusual maturity for someone his age, gave us the impression that he would be able to play as a true freshman,” Frost said. “You never know how someone is going to handle that situa- tion. He handled it really well.” There was a quarterback competition in Lincoln a year ago. Frost and Verduzco had three to choose from: Martinez, redshirt freshman Tristan Gebbia and sophomore Andrew Bunch. Sophomore Noah Vedral, who had followed Frost home to Nebraska, wasn’t eligible at the time. It came down to Martinez and Gebbia. It seems obvious now, but maybe it wasn’t at the time. Frost named Martinez as the starter, and Gebbia transferred to Oregon State. Prep Football......1-3D ■ Playmakers return for Islanders, 1D ■ Northwest faces the grind again, 1D ■ GICC has “unfinished business,” 1D ■ Team capsules, 3D Prep Volleyball ...1-3E ■ Vikings want to keep tradition going, 1E ■ GICC has depth, experience, 1E ■ Team capsules, 3E Other Prep sports 1-3F ■ NW softball beefs up schedule, 1F ■ Kosmicki returns to lead Islander cross country, page 2F ■ Team capsules, 3F INSIDE Nebraska Schedule Aug. 31 ........South Alabama Sept. 7 ............... at Colorado Sept. 14..... Northern Illinois Sept. 21 ................... at Illinois Sept. 28............... Ohio State Oct. 5 .............Northwestern Oct. 12 ..............at Minnesota Oct. 26....................... Indiana Nov. 2.....................at Purdue Nov. 16 .................. Wisconsin Nov. 23.............. at Maryland Nov. 29 ............................Iowa GAME 1 South Alabama (0-0) at Nebraska, Sat. 11 a.m. Aug. 31 GAME 2 at Colorado (0-0) vs. Colorado St., Friday, 9 p.m. Sept. 7 GAME 3 N. Illinois (0-0) vs. Illinois State, 6 p.m. Sat. Sept. 14 GAME 4 at Illinois (0-0) vs. Akron, 11 a.m. Sat. Sept. 21 GAME 5 Ohio State (0-0) vs. FAU, 11 a.m. Sat. Sept. 28 GAME 6 N-Western (0-0) at Stanford, 3 p.m. Sat. Oct. 5 GAME 7 at Minnesota (0-0) vs. SD. State, 8 p.m., Thurs Oct. 12 GAME 8 Indiana (0-0) vs. Ball State, 11 a.m., Sat. Oct. 26 GAME 9 at Purdue (0-0) at Nevada, 8:30 p.m., Fri. Nov. 2 GAME 10 Wisconsin (0-0) at South Florida, 6 p.m., Fri. Nov. 16 GAME 11 at Maryland (0-0) vs. Howard, 11 a.m. Sat. Nov. 23 GAME 12 Iowa (0-0) vs. Miami (Ohio), 6:30 p.m. Sat. Nov. 29 Husker Schedule, all times Central ■ turn to HUSKERS , page 2C