The evening before Mike Martin (along with teammate David Molk) was announced as an Outland Trophy Watchlist member, Martin was waiting patiently at the end of the line at the Ann Arbor Barnes & Noble to meet with Dhani Jones. Of course Martin wanted to talk to Jones about Micigan football and Dhani's new book, The Sportsman -- but he also wanted to talk about something else they have in common. Making a difference.You probably already know about Dhani's Bow Tie Cause, but did you know that Martin is already developing his own philanthropic efforts?
Over at thewolverine.com, Andy Reid tells the story of how Martin drew inspiration from Jones and is working to make things better in Detroit.
The very last person in line stood patiently, with a huge smile on his face, waiting for the chance to talk to Jones, a personal hero of his. The man was Mike Martin, senior defensive tackle.
Although he's had a chance to meet Jones before, Martin couldn't pass up the opportunity to see him face-to-face again.
"I don't look at myself as a big-time senior, or a football player at Michigan," Martin said. "I'm just a fan that has more say in the game."
Martin said he has been inspired by Jones's charity BowTie Cause, which has helped raise money for C.S. Mott Children's Hospital, LiveStrong, NPR, Ronald McDonald House, Alzheimer's research and myriad other causes.
"I've followed him and everything he's done, inside and outside football, and it really interested me," Martin said. "When I look at what I want to do, being in his shoes really interests me. I really envy him. He's a great guy, a Michigan guy."
So this summer, Martin began to give back as well, hoping to one day become "Dhani without the bowtie."
Martin teamed up with Ryan Doyle, a Michigan grad and founder of the Live To Give Foundation, to begin charitable work in Detroit.
Check out the rest of the article. It provides some great insights into the mind and motivation of one the Wolverines' best.
[Edit: And now the story has been pushed to the national Rivals site.]