Football

New Nebraska coach turning to true freshman starter at QB. And he’s from Clovis West

Adrian Martinez makes it official and signs with Nebraska

Clovis West quarterback Adrian Martinez reflects on his recruiting and why he signed with Nebraska on Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2017. - Anthony Galaviz
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Clovis West quarterback Adrian Martinez reflects on his recruiting and why he signed with Nebraska on Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2017. - Anthony Galaviz

The Adrian Martinez era will officially begin on Saturday.

Nebraska released its depth chart on Sunday and listed the ex-Clovis West High star as the starting quarterback when the Cornhuskers host the Akron Zips.

Fans in the central San Joaquin Valley will get an opportunity to watch Martinez start as Nebraska’s first true freshman to get the nod – the 5 p.m. Pacific game is scheduled to air on FOX (KMPH-26.1).

Martinez wasn’t medically cleared to play from a shoulder injury during the 2017 high school football season. He was a midyear transfer to Nebraska, new coach Scott Frost’s first recruit, and participated in spring practice.

Martinez battled with redshirt freshman Tristan Gebbia for the starting spot.

Martinez’s father, Tony, said the family will be in Lincoln on Saturday for the big day.

“We are very excited for Adrian and everyone involved with the Nebraska football team,” Tony Martinez said. “He is very excited, focused and working in preparation for Akron.”

Clovis West coach George Petrissans had Martinez on the field for two seasons, including his breakout junior year (2016) when he passed for 2,562 yards and 25 touchdowns (against four interceptions) in 12 games. Petrissans said he reached out to his former QB after learning the news.

“I said, ‘Congrats’ and ‘Now get to work.’

“Adrian is a wonderful person, and you root for guys who’re willing to work hard, and that’s what he does,” Petrissans said.

He said he gets why Nebraska coaches would trust a true freshman with the season-opening reins, “because of the way Adrian approaches the game and how hard he works at his craft. He’s extremely intelligent. I just thought he would have a chance playing in that type of offense that is fast-paced.”

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