Soaring to New Heights
COLUMBIA - People often need to go through struggles to find success. At Lincoln University Martee Tenner is hoping to jump start his football career by flipping the script on his troubles.
Tenner grew up in Mississippi and started his college football career at Southwest Mississippi Junior College. What he did during Lincoln University's spring football season caught national attention. Tenner caught a pass on the run and then flipped over teammate and Lincoln cornerback Terrance Banks.
Tenner's teammate, Terrance Banks was amazed by the play, "he's from Mississippi. They do wild stuff, but I didn't expect him to do that, though. It was shocking. I was shocked myself because he just flipped over me."
Tenner who thought he would never play again after tearing his MCL did not plan on doing a trick move his first time on the field, "my adrenaline was rushing. I was excited...I was ready to go... pumped up... finally got a chance on the field."
Lincoln's running back coach Tony Van Zant was just as shocked as the rest of the team, "he happened to get the ball and just did what he did." Van Zant knows about athletes coming back from knee injuries. He had to do the same during his time at Mizzou in the 1980's.
Lincoln's head coach, Mike Jones loves the enthusiasm Tenner brings to the field, "he's going to do anything and everything to make himself better and do as much as he can to make his team better. If he has to jump over people that's what he has to do."
The play itself was incredible and Coach Jones agrees saying, "it was a phenominal play. He jumped in air, flipped, lands on his feet and just keeps running. So, great play."
It didn't make everyone happy though, Coach Van Zant, had some trouble with it, "I would rather him run through the guy than flip over the guy. Hopefully that was his last time doing it."
Lincoln posted the play on Youtube April 23rd and it caught national attention. ESPN named it a top play of the day and eventually the play of the week.
Coach Jones along with other players liked the attention, "it gives us national noteriety. So, we'll be able to say... look we got a guy on ESPN sportscenter plays of the week... everybody across the country sees it."
Tenner believes the play has helped Licoln get in the spotlight rather than himself, "it's been big for Lincoln. I'm just glad that I'm here. Even if it wasn't me... it just put Lincoln on the map."
Tenner says he's turned flips since he was seven years old. Despite the coaches' saying he should never flip again Tenner isn't making any promises.