Nebraska quarterback Taylor Martinez has been a tough player to pin down since his arrival in Lincoln. One minute, he is transforming a dead play into an electrifying 70-yard touchdown run. The next, he next, he is throwing deep into double coverage, making fans wonder why he is even given the ball in the first place.
After the many highlights and lowlights are said and done, what will be the ultimate Husker legacy of Taylor Martinez?
In all likelihood, it will be one of casual endearment and pleasant memories of a handful of unforgettable touchdown runs.
Martinez will never receive the glory of former Nebraska signal-callers such as Tommie Frazier and Eric Crouch because he never brought any hardware back to Lincoln. But fortunately for him, time tends to heal all wounds, and Husker fans will choose to recall the good times over the bad.
Of course, Martinez still has the opportunity to change his championship legacy. Despite choking in the Big 12 Championship Game against Oklahoma his freshman year and never receiving a chance for a title last year thanks to a doormat-like Husker defense, he has one more chance.
However, winning the Big Ten title this year will be the most difficult task of all.
The path to the Big Ten Championship game will be perhaps the easiest, though. Martinez will have to guide Nebraska to a victory in Ann Arbor, but otherwise should have relatively few obstacles.
The only problem is the monster that will await him in Indianapolis: the Ohio State Buckeyes.
Capping his impressive Husker career with a conference title seems appropriate. But it just does not look to be in the cards, as Martinez will be shut out of the BCS bowls one final time.
Without any championship rings, Martinez's legacy will come down to his individual accomplishments. And, luckily, fans will forget his injury-hampered performances his freshman year and his interceptions in Madison.
Like the often forgotten passing struggles of Eric Crouch, time fades players’ travails and illuminates their triumphs.
So Martinez’s countless turnovers and numerous bounce-passes to Husker receivers will drift to the back of fans’ memories. Yet the game-changing runs and a few clutch throws will remain as vivid as ever.
His lack of championships will do his legacy no favors, but Husker Nation will remember with mild content the sometimes erratic quarterback who was a home run threat every time he touched the ball.
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