Recruit has earned his stripes
Grandview HS Zebra named All-State
Austin Martinez signs to play football and baseball
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- Austin Martinez comes to Southwestern Assemblies of God University having lived up to his first name during his prep career.
Having prospered in four sports, including basketball, football, track and baseball, the 5’11 Martinez has certainly earned his share of ‘awe’ moments. Now he hopes to make a similar impact on the collegiate level in two of them; football and baseball.
Austin (AW-stuhn), which is Latin for great and/or venerable (commanding respect), will suit up for SAGU head coach Jesse Godding when the football team reports to camp on August 13.
During his senior season at Grandview High School he was chosen the Ironman of the Year in Johnson County after earning District 6 (Class 2A) Utility Player of the Year. He also made the North American All-Star West Team as well as meriting Academic All-State honors.
While playing for *Aubrey Sims, the head coach at Grandview last season, Martinez was on the receiving end of 56 passes, gaining 994 yards, an average pick up of 17.7 yards. He also toted the ball 24 times, rushing for 206 yards (8.5 per attempt).
In short, he moved both the chains and fans! The speed merchant scored 11 touchdowns in the process.
The slot receiver was a major contributor on the defensive side as well, sparking the Zebras during an 8-2 campaign.
Coach Godding signed Martinez as a defensive back. At Grandview, which is near Cleburne - on the southern side of Fort Worth, Martinez played safety.
He was second on the team in tackles with 82. He defended six passes and forced three fumbles. At 175-pounds, he is known for being on the giving end of big hits in the secondary.
His family moved 32 miles southeast to Grandview from Godley, Texas after his junior season.
Under head coach Randy Brawner, Martinez was named to three different All-State teams, including a selection by the Associated Press, as a cornerback.
He picked off nine passes, returning four for touchdowns! He separated ball-carriers from the pigskin on four occasions and broke up five passes for the Wildcats, who rolled to a 10-1 mark.
Martinez was voted the Defensive Most Valuable Player in District 4 (Class 2A).
The aggressive defender utilizes his quickness to reroute receivers and disengages from opposing blockers to make stops in the open field.
“Austin is an intelligent, competitive player,” Coach Godding said last week. “He shone on both sides of the ball as a high school player.”
“As a defensive back he has tools that will enhance our capabilities as a defense.”
“He’s starting out with some great skills,” the veteran head coach pointed out. “He’s been very successful at two different high schools and he’s got good technical skills. His 40-yard dash time and football instincts are evident.”
As for his playmaking abilities on offense, Godding told Zack Cunningham (Sports Editor, Cleburne Times), “We’re going to bring him in as a defensive back. But he can play offensively, as well. He’s got a good skill set for both.”
How successful he can be at both will be determined in the future. “I feel like I can do it,” Martinez said. “I just have to keep my body in shape.”
“He’s a great character kid,” Godding continued. “And we are always in the market for character!”
Austin’s brother, Landry, enrolled at SAGU earlier this year after transferring from East Texas Baptist University (NCAA Division III).
He rushed for nearly 6,000 yards and 106 TD’s at Godley, where he garnered All-State honors.
News of his signing will be posted tomorrow.
“It’ll be like high school again,” Austin said. “I have a chance to compete for a starting role and will have a chance to get on the field with my brother.”
“Both of these young men are character individuals who are driven to excel in their academics and athletics,” praised Coach Godding. “We are blessed to have been able to recruit both of them.”
About SAGU football
The Southwestern Lions are dual Division I members in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA).
SAGU, who compete in the Central States Football League, went 4-6 last fall.
The team ran a version of the spread option offense last year behind two quarterbacks; Jason Rice (Katy, Texas) and Reid Golson (Grandview, Tx). Golson, a junior, is now the heir apparent as the trigger-man.
The Jungle Kings ranked #27 in the nation in scoring, averaging 30.0 per game. With 353 yards (160 rushing, 193 passing) of total offense, the team rated 37th. Twenty-nine turnovers (16 fumbles, 13 interceptions) kept a talented unit from being even more productive.
The team clearly improved from the 2010 squad that put 19.9 points on the scoreboard with an offense that picked up 321 yards (143 on the ground, 178 through the air) with 31 turnovers (14 fumbles lost, 17 interceptions).
SAGU was 2-8 two years ago.
Under Defensive Coordinator John Allen, the Lions employed a 3-4 defense a year ago.
They allowed 32 ppg and 368 yards of total offense. SAGU forced 23 turnovers, 14 of which were fumble recoveries.
In 2010 the D yielded 34.5 ppg, 368 yards and squeezed 24 turnovers from the opposition (10 fumbles, 14 picks).
Lions host nationally ranked Bethany on Sept. 1
The Lions will open the season with a September 1 home debut against Bethany College (Kan). The Swedes were 8-3 last season.
All five home games will be broadcast on-line in high definition, the only NAIA school to livestream in HD.
Beginning this fall, all home contests LiveStats will also be made available to fans. It is a digital version of the game’s play-by-play and current team and player statistics are they happen.
Both broadcasts are accessible for free. An official announcement will be made in late August.
*Aubrey Sims has since left Grandview for a new job at Snyder, Texas (between Abilene and Lubbock). Casey Walraven is the new HC at Grandview.