Martinez honored to start, but ‘mission hasn’t been accomplished yet’

August 27, 2018

LINCOLN — On Saturday afternoon, Adrian Martinez hopped on his scooter and rolled across campus to Mario Verduzco’s office.

He was nervous.

“I think in my own mind I felt I was the starter,” Martinez said Monday. “I felt I’d earned it but I wasn’t entirely sure.”

Verduzco sat Martinez down and told him he’d be the first true freshman quarterback to start a season opener in Husker history.

“I really just spilled my guts for it,” Martinez said. “Obviously it’s an honor to be the starting quarterback at this university.”

Martinez graduated from Fresno (Calif.) Clovis West in December and enrolled at Nebraska in early January. Martinez battled with redshirt freshman Tristan Gebbia for eight months before winning the job.

“That was the plan in my mind,” Martinez said of starting right away. “Obviously I would be very disappointed if it was vice versa, so we had sympathy for each other. (Tristan) congratulated me. I think we’re both men and competed hard.”

Martinez said he loved calling his dad to tell him the news. But even as excited as he is, the mission isn’t over.

“I feel like I should’ve been happier than I was,” Martinez said. “I was ecstatic. I called my dad and my family and five minutes later I was already thinking about Akron. When we win, that’s when I’ll be on cloud nine. The mission hasn’t been accomplished yet in my mind.”

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