Is Brandon Martin still hurt?

Has he been practicing or is he still injured?

The last I heard he is not hurt, but is behind as a result of his injury, summer weight gain and playbook knowledge.

If he is healthy now, is the fact that the No. 1 JC receiver recruit is struggling to climb the depth chart an indication of very good talent ahead of him or him being a little over rated?

I think it’s an indication that you can’t read too much into JUCO ratings or expect too much out of JUCO transfers right away. I had an old basketball coach tell me that you didn’t see a JUCO player fully adjust until toward the end of his first year of D1. I would assume that is the case for football, too. The talent level, academic expectations and other variables are so much different than they see in JUCO. The players they are trying to beat out for playing time likely would have similar JUCO credentials had they gone that route.

I talked to Michael Smith about Martin some earlier in the preseason. I got the impression he wasn’t happy with Martin’s work ethic, and especially not pleased with the weight gain that he thought slowed him down.

It seems awfully early to ask, but could Martin take a redshirt year?

I think he has 3 years to to play 3… no red shirt available, but still has plenty of chances to contribute.

With no redshirt available, there is no doubt that Martin will play this year. The question is: how much?

Playbook and conditioning have been issues, as well as the injury. He may be someone who makes more of an impact down the road.

A lack of work ethic is a discipline issue. The want too! Martin needs to put in the work and dedication to earn PT. Sometime spoiled athletes get lazy and expect special treatment. Performance is as much about heart as talent.
I hope the young man get both of his ears open and takes the coaching he’s given to where he can make a positive impact for the team.

It’s interesting that Nance, also a JUCO player, appears to be in contention for much playing time. I think it comes down to the individual player. Martin had the credentials, but his teammate Nance is the one who is turning heads. Some JUCO players are ready for the next step and others not so much. Some can go to JUCO and get by on talent alone, never learning a good work ethic. Undoubtedly, Martin is extremely talented, but he’s got to get fully onboard if he’s ever going to contribute like his rating suggested he would.

Michael Smith mentioned him as one of the five for sure in the rotation if Jared and T.J. can’t go. Obviously that means he’s No. 7 if they are healthy, but being apparently in front of Koilan is progress. Michael said he’s running better and just as importantly has done extra work with the playbook recently.

Brandon has made a push in the last week. He’s done extra tape study, spent extra time with Jared Cornelius. Mostly, he just missed time in camp.

I’m writing some about this, but the key is that he’d never been in a pro system. He’d been in a spread offense. Knew two routes, go and slant. That’s all they ran at JC. He needed camp to perfect the route tree and learn to read defenses.

I think you will see him sooner rather than later. He’s a beast. Big body, long arms and a great stride. He’ll play this season. I expect him to be a big contributor this season. if there is someone he reminds me of it’s Boo Williams. He’s got everything you need, just needed to learn routes, adjustments and figure out how to read the secondary.

Junior college secondary coverages are pretty simple. You have cover three and cover three. No, that’s not an over simplification. I went over that with Michael Smith yesterday. He just said Brandon needed to be out there. He’s been catching up in a hurry the past 10 days.

That’s good to hear Clay. Hope he gets it. Seems to have the all the tools.

I keep thinking about Last Chance U and what we saw there about JUCO. I have a feeling it was cut to show the down sides, but still it is a long, long way from SEC.

Michael Smith had a twinkle in his eyes when he talked about Brandon Martin. There is nothing disappointing about what they’ve found in Brandon. He just had a back injury at the wrong time in camp. He’s hitting his stride now and is gobbling up information. He has shown the ability to learn it and he’s eliminating mistakes. I think Martin and Nance will both have good roles this year.

One thing to note, it’s not like they are a lot better athletically than the others on campus. Guys like Stewart, Pettway, Cornelius, Hammonds, Barnes, Jackson and Warren are great athletes, too. It’s a fun, healthy competition.