As a boarding school, Greer Martini’s Woodberry Forest team always starts football later than other high schools and this year is no different. In fact, fellow 2014 Notre Dame commit Justin Brent’s Speedway High School squad had its first official game just two days after Martini and Woodberry began preseason camp.
“Early Ball, which is our three weeks of football before the season, started Aug. 21st,” Martini said. “We get a little bit of a later start and since we’re a boarding school, we have to do a lot of the training by ourselves. We can’t practice as a team until then, so we have to get up to speed pretty quick.”
Notre Dame opens up the season almost a full week before the Virginia prep school.
“Our first game is Sept. 6th,” said Martini.
Training on his own can be difficult, but does have some help.
“I was following our workout packet for Woodberry and also doing a lot of cross-fit training,” he said. “I was doing sprints and stuff. I just did as much as possible to get in shape and get stronger. A lot of it is on your own.
“My brothers are both going to Woodberry, so I trained with them. They’re good lifting partners.”
Woodberry Forest finished the 2012 season 7-3, but Martini believes the Tigers can be better in 2013.
“I think we’re a veteran squad,” he said. “We were kind of young last year. I think some of our errors and our three losses were because of inexperience. I think we’re going to be an experienced team. The defense is going to be really strong this year.”
Martini has been a leader for Clint Alexander’s squad for two years now, but will be counted on for even more leadership as a senior.
“My sophomore year and junior year, it was more leading on the field, talking with my actions,” Martini said. “Now it’s more about being vocal. I think one of the biggest things at Woodberry is passing down my knowledge of football and my experiences to younger players to keep building the program.
“My biggest job this year is to have a great senior year, but also to pass along some of the ways we do the things we do in our program, how we succeed and building up our program so it won’t just be good this year, but it’ll be good the next five years and so on.”
Martini wants to show he can be an even more physical player this year.
“I feel really confident going into the season with my quickness, my ability and strength,” he said. “This year, I really want to be more violent and be more of a presence out on the field, just really driving through tackles and making big hits. Since I didn’t play very much offense last year, I want to get on the offensive side of the ball and play some tight end and wide receiver.”
Martini isn’t going to take his official visit to Notre Dame until the postseason banquet, but he’s planning to be at the Irish’s game against USC for an unofficial. He’s kept in touch with former Woodberry Forest teammate and current Irish freshman Doug Randolph.
“I’ve been texting him off and on. He’s been telling me how much he loves it. I’ve been asking him questions about summer school, how things are and practices. He’s been giving me the inside scoop.”