Adrian Martinez (born January 7, 2000) is an American football quarterback for the Nebraska Cornhuskers.
Martinez attended the Clovis West High School in Fresno, California. He played both football and basketball in high school. He missed his senior season of football due to a torn labrum he suffered while playing basketball. As a junior, he was the Fresno Bee football player of the year after he passed for 2,562 yards with 25 touchdowns and rushed for 1,462 yards and 14 touchdowns.
Martinez was regarded as a four-star prospect and was the seventh-highest-ranked dual-threat quarterback in the class of 2018 according to the 247Sports Composite. Martinez originally committed to play college football at the University of California, Berkeley and University of Tennessee before ultimately deciding on the University of Nebraska.
First-year Nebraska head coach Scott Frost named Martinez the starting quarterback heading into the 2018 season opener, making him the first true freshman to ever begin a season as the starting quarterback at Nebraska. In the Cornhuskers' opening game against Colorado, Martinez threw for 187 yards, one touchdown, and an interception, and added 117 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns on the ground. Nebraska lost the game 33–28. Martinez went down with a knee injury in the final minutes of the Colorado game, an injury that also caused him to miss the following game against Troy, which also ended in a loss for Nebraska. Martinez returned from injury but could not help the Cornhuskers return to winning form, as the team lost its first six games of the year for the worst start to a season in program history. Martinez's first career win came against Minnesota, where he threw for 276 yards and three passing touchdowns, and ran for another touchdown on the ground in the 53–28 victory. He was named Big Ten Co-Freshman of the Week (with Rondale Moore) for the performance. Martinez earned two more Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors following a loss to Ohio State on November 3 and a victory over Illinois on November 10.
Martinez finished his freshman season with 2,617 passing yards, 17 passing touchdowns, and eight interceptions. He added 629 rushing yards and eight rushing touchdowns on the ground. He finished sixth in the Big Ten Conference in passing yards and total touchdowns, and was fourth in passer rating.
Martinez received high expectations heading into his sophomore season in 2019, earning pre-season honors at Big Ten Media Days and even appearing in Heisman Trophy candidate discussions. However, he struggled mightily, leading Nebraska to a 5-7 record in a disappointing season.