November 24, 2009

4-star Martin's sister plays role in unofficial visit

When Carlton Martin emerged from the Vaught-Hemingway Stadium tunnel Saturday, it would have been easy to confuse the four-star recruit with someone already associated with the Rebels.

Martin, the 6-foot-2, 268-pound Madison (Central), Miss., defensive tackle, sported a red and blue knit cap and a red Ole Miss sweatshirt on his official visit for the Rebels' 25-23 victory over then-No. 10 LSU.

Not one to go into detail about a leader for his services at the next level, Martin credited his sister - an Ole Miss student - with the wardrobe choice.

"My sister got me those clothes, so I decided to wear them," said a laughing Martin. "She is kind of persuasive at times, but I didn't mind."

Martin's sister was also the one mainly responsible for his attendance in Oxford, Miss., over the weekend. The nation's No. 24 defensive tackle was torn between LSU at Ole Miss and Tulsa at Southern Miss for his most recent unofficial visit, but the decision became a moot point Saturday morning because his sister needed a ride back to campus.

With the atmosphere that unfolded for the nationally televised contest, Martin is glad he chose the Southeastern Conference venue.

"It was a lot of fun, and that ending was crazy," Martin said. "The crowd was up and into the game, and you couldn't help but be sucked in as it kept going. Everybody was excited and going nuts. I picked the right game."

Martin is familiar with Ole Miss, thus there's not much new to learn about the program this late in the season. He concentrates on the Rebel defense and continues to like its scheme and use of personnel.

Ole Miss is recruiting Martin to play either inside or tackle or possibly slide out to defensive end.

"They think I could do both, and I know I can play early if I perform," Martin said. It looks like a good defense to play in because they rotate the guys and keep everybody fresh. I'm sure that makes for competition too. Nothing is safe, keeping you on your toes, and you won't be out there dragging tired either."

Martin will attend the annual Egg Bowl game between Ole Miss and Mississippi State Saturday in Starkville, Miss. But first, Madison Central will face South Panola with a Mississippi Class 6A state title shot on the line.

During last week's playoff game against Olive Branch, Madison Central trailed 7-0 early, but a sack for a safety by Martin got things going, and the Jaguars rolled, 54-23.

"It's a big weekend," Martin said. "We've got work to do Friday, and It's a game we've waited on for a year, and then hopefully we'll be in a good mood when we go to the Egg Bowl. That'll be a cool day also."

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