KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Lincoln Prep Senior Running Back Travis Martin is not one to tout his personal achievements. But, Lincoln Prep Head Coach Henry Newell sings Martin's praises.
"When we got him as a freshman, we knew he was going to be a very good ball player," Coach Newell said. "He played behind some really good backs. So, he had to wait his turn to get the ball."
Patience has paid off for Travis. He's had a monster season this year. He's rushed for 1,545 yards and 18 TD's. He's almost over 4,000 career rushing yards. Travis has dominated in pressure situations. He rushed for 139 yards and 3 touchdown's in Lincoln Prep's 34-14 win over Van Horn.
In addition, he rushed 28 times for 306 yards and 2 rushing touchdown's in the Blue Tigers 62-58 win over Central. He also had 78 receiving yards and 2 receiving touchdown's against Central. His performance helped Lincoln Prep win the 2016 Interscholastic League Championship.
It also earned him this week's Hy-Vee 41 Five-Star Athlete of the Week honors.
"It's an honor. It's truly a blessing," Travis said of winning the award. "It shows that [the] hard work that you put on and off the field is being recognized."
This is Coach Newell's 40th year of coaching. He's seen a lot of people come and go. He says that Travis is one of the best running backs that he's ever seen play on his teams.
"What makes him so good is that, as the game goes on, he gets better and better and better," Coach Newell said. "He's the type of back that has to touch the ball [at least] 25 times. When teams get tired in the second half, that's when he takes off. And, he's a durable kid."
Travis continues playing hard and never lets up the entire game. His teammates certainly relish getting the opportunity to help him get to the end zone.
"We really [get to] rolling. On most of the plays, when I know it's a play to our side, to my side of the ball, me and Travis [are] in the huddle like, 'Let's go'," Senior Linebacker Jalen Green-Edison said. "So when everybody else is tired [and] gassed, he's like, 'Yeah, we're about to score right now'."
Even though Travis has become incredibly successful and is getting solid interest from Division I schools like: Kansas, Northern Iowa, North Dakota State and Arkansas State, as well as other Division II schools like: Northwest Missouri State and Missouri Western, he gives most of the credit to those around him.
"It's a great feeling. I just wanna thank all my teammates, from the Receivers, to the Offensive Lineman," Martin said. "We've got a Senior Right Guard who's leading them. You know, all I do as the back is stay patient. Let the play develop. They open up the hole for me. And, I take it from there."
NOTE: The Hy-Vee 41 Five-Star Athlete of the Week airs every Thursday during the 10 p.m. sportscast for the entire school year.
Ryan Marshall can be reached at Ryan.Marshall@KSHB.com.