The Kansas State coach was riding the exercise bike in his office when reached Friday morning. Every day, he alternates between the bike and an elliptical machine for an hour, in case you were curious. Anyway, I figured the perfect way to dust off the “Five” would be to bring back Martin, who was featured Sept. 6, 2007, and is passionate about everything — including his cardio.
1. Some of the fan base has grumbled about the perceived lack of competition in the non-conference schedule. Explain the strategy.
Our schedule is ranked as the 35th-toughest schedule in the nation (Rivals’ pre-season strength of schedule rankings). When we play 16 Big 12 games, that’s 16 better games than everybody but two or three conferences that are competitive with us… When you put games on your schedule, you do so to get on television and to chal-lenge your team. If I was concerned with going 12-0, we wouldn’t play Oakland, Cleveland State and Gardner-Webb. We’d play someone else. Sometimes, the sexy games are difficult to schedule… We’re playing Southern Miss, which is coached by Larry Eustachy, one of the better coaches in country, and he has a point guard who will be in the NBA next year… Last year, Gardner-Webb went into Lexington and beat Kentucky… I know I’m extremely happy with our schedule.
2. In what area do you need to improve as a coach?
The one thing you always have to continue to do is evaluating yourself. The day you think you have all of the answers, you’ll run into a dead end. I’m striving for a constant evaulation of myself… Also, patience, and that’s something I’ve battled with since the day I started coaching… But I don’t make playing time decisions based on the game. It’s all on preparation. You either prepare to succeed or prepare to fail… We all want to get to the finish line. We have to realize the finish line isn’t moving. Have to keep the feet churning.
3. What’s more ideal — coaching a talented kid to a level that is expected or coaxing the maximum ability out of a less talented kid?
It’s not one more than the other. I enjoy both. The reason I like coaching is you have to get people to co-exist. They have to realize how important it is to work together to achieve a common goal. If your selfish in your everyday life, you’re going to be lonely. It’s the same way in basketball… People have helped me grow as a person in life, and I love coaching because it allows me to do the same through basketball.
4. Do you ever dread going to work?
No. Me? Noooooo. Are you kidding me? I’m living the dream. Some people wish they could do some-thing their whole life, but never take a chance. I took a chance eight years ago, chasing a dream, and I’m living it now. It’s hard for me to be upset at life. I’ve got a healthy family, a great wife and I get to do what I dreamed of doing my whole life.
5. What type of music does Frank Martin listen to?
A little of everything. Some R&B, some Sinatra. It all depends on the mood. When I’m wound up, I want some high energy stuff to really get me going. When I need to relax, I listen to jazz, some R&B… When I’m trying to reflect, I listen to some old-time music, stuff I grew up with.
(BONUS) 6. Any truth to the rumors K-State will be playing next year in Puerto Rico?
(BONUS) 7. If you had a Heisman Trophy vote, who would you cast it for?
The quarterback at Texas Tech (Graham Harrell). Hey, the receiver there (Michael Crabtree) is big-time, but somebody stands in the pocket and delivers the ball to him, right?