Catching up with Remy Martin (Football)

September 1, 2009
Remey Martin

Sometimes Anchorage’s Remy Martin has to pinch himself, just to make sure he’s really a Pac-10 football player.

You can’t blame him. It’s been a long road that started at West High and continued to Westhills Junior College before ending at Washington State University, a dream-come-true journey that’s been worth every bit of sweat and sacrifice.

“I’m honored,” Martin said of wearing a Cougars No. 48 jersey.

It’s also been a reality check.

“I watched the Pac-10 growing up and I always wondered what caliber of talent it took because all kids in high school feel like they can play at that level,” Martin said. “Well, I went to junior college first, and I just want to let all them kids know that it’s a different kind of level of football.”

Welcome to the Pac-10.

Martin came to Washington State as a walk-on running back, but the junior likely will be moved to fullback given his 6-foot-2, 225-pound frame and blocking ability. If you didn’t know, Martin played linebacker and defensive line in junior college, so he likes to hit people.

But don’t assume Martin is just another jock. He speaks like a scholar and acts like a gentleman, setting a great example for Alaska and his family.

“I try to keep up my grades,” he said. “I’m a student before I’m an athlete.”

Tonight we caught up with Martin after practice to talk about life as a Pac-10 football player:

Question: What’s it like living in Pullman?
Answer: It’s nice out here. It’s a college atmosphere and there are friendly people. The students love their athletes and I enjoy being out here. The weather is kind of like back home.

Q: What’s so attractive about playing running back?
A: I played linebacker when I was at Westhills Community College and I liked that a lot, but, you know, when I play running back it takes me back home to when I was in Alaska at West and I led the state in rushing yards, and I just enjoy being on the offensive side of the ball. I like to score. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love defense. I love hitting. But I like to carry the rock

Q: What’s the hardest part of practice?
A: Basically just sitting out and watching. I’m in the rotation a lot because right now, I mean, I’m a fullback and as of right now I’m like the only fullback that we have, so I’m in. I’m getting reps and reps, even if it’s on scout team. Just anything to make our team better.

Q: As a walk-on, are you always trying to earn respect?
A: You know what, I’ve done so much for the respect growing up. Right now I’m just trying to work on school, make sure I know my place and stay on top of everything and focus on what’s important. I’m not really trying to get that respect thing right now because as long as I do my assignment the respect always comes. As long as you hold your head up high and walk around like a leader … being a leader is the most important thing because no matter how you are, if you’re a leader kids will look up to you. I just try to keep that leader mentality.

Q: Do you follow the progress of West High football?
A: I follow them a little bit. I still know a few of the kids; they were in elementary school when I was in high school, and it’s funny to go back and watch them because they’re all grown up. But you know, after ’06 the talent went down. (Laughs)

Q: What do you miss most about Alaska?
A: I like being home. What I like about it the most is that my family is there, which feels good, because my mom was in Cleveland with my sister and my dad was in Alaska with my little brother, so my family was kind of broken up. So on vacations I wouldn’t be able to see my family at times and it would be stressful, so just to have them and my friends … you know they all love me when I get back home.

Q: What’s the worst Alaska question have you heard?
A: Do you guys live in igloos? That’s the worst one. And I say, ‘Do we live in igloos?’ Where are you from?

Q: What’s your favorite football movie?
A: Remember the Titans.

Q: You got a nickname?
A: They call me Yak around here, like the Cognac.

Q: What was your favorite ride at the Alaska State Fair?
A: The merry-go-round because it’s kind of chill. It doesn’t get me sick.

Q: Who are you bumping on your iPod?
A: I listen to Drake and (Lil) Wayne.

Q: How do you plan to spend your dividend check?
A: You know what, I wish I had a dividend. I mean, I’m a resident, but because my parents don’t follow up on the stuff I have to do I haven’t got one the past three years. And every time I go apply for one, they said, you were out of state for this time and this time. That’s weak because everybody talks about their dividend and I’m like, why can’t I get one?

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