FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida — Notre Dame offensive coordinator Chuck Martin had a little fun with the reporters covering his news conference today. He’s got a sharp, fast sense of humor, but Alabama fans might not think he was very funny this morning.
Martin shook it up the typical say-nice-things-about-everybody formula when asked about how Oklahoma’s Jamelle Holieway is the only freshman quarterback to win a major college national championship in the modern era. Martin’s quarterback, Everett Golson, is a redshirt freshman.
However, when Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly was at Grand Valley State and Martin was his offensive coordinator, the Lakers won a Division II national title with then-freshman Cullen Finnerty at quarterback. After the season, Kelly left for Central Michigan, and Martin coached the team as Finnerty quarterbacked the Lakers to titles in 2005 and 2006. Martin pointed out Finnerty when asked about freshmen quarterbacks winning championships.
“He went on to win three, so we’re hoping history repeats itself,” Martin said with a smile. “Everybody is worried about that next one, we’re trying to make this the first of three, actually.”
With his audience caught a little bit off guard, Martin added, “No one thought that was coming out today, huh? You guys are all way too short-minded with your thinking. Trying to think big picture here.”