By MARINA WATERS
David Crockett High School senior Ievan Martin signed Thursday to play football for the University of Virginia’s College at Wise. Martin is an offensive guard and offensive tackle as part of the Pioneer football team.
For Crockett’s assistant football coach Stephen Jackson, it wasn’t just Martin’s size and strength that stuck out in the coach’s mind—it was his reaction to pressure.
“This is one of the first guys I met when I got here. I thought, ‘My lord, I hope everybody’s that big at Crockett’,” Jackson said. “But this guy right here, I challenged him one of the first days I got here. And he stood up to the challenge. I would put Ievan Martin in front of anybody right now.”
Though Martin said the money he will receive for his athletic scholarship is part of what motivated him to sign with UVA Wise, he also said a similarity to Crockett’s squad convinced him to join the Cavaliers.
“They have a nice campus,” Martin said. “And their football team is really close, like we are here.”
Martin has hung up his cleats for the Pioneers, but for Martin and Coach Jackson, the excitement of the high school senior becoming a Cavalier and forever being a Pioneer is an accomplishment that continues.
“This kid is going to do great things with his life,” Jackson said. “And we just look forward to having him come out there and represent Crockett for the rest of his future.”