Updated

What's in a nickname?

Nebraska fans and teammates refer to sophomore quarterback Taylor Martinez as T-Magic. Right now, an inconsistent Husker offense needs Martinez to continue pulling rabbits out of his helmet in the form of big plays.

Martinez totaled 385 yards of total offense -- eighth-best in Husker history -- in Saturday's wild 42-29 win against Fresno State. He ran for 166 yards on 15 carries (11 yards per carry) and completed 10 of 21 passes for 219 yards. He scored twice on the ground and threw one touchdown pass.

And consider this: Of Martinez' 25 plays, seven were for 20 yards or more.

He's a big play waiting to happen, and defenses know it.

The Nebraska offense started slowly, totaling less than 99 seconds on each of its first two possessions. But Martinez warmed up and had runs of 57, 38 and 46 yards, the last on third-and-3 with Nebraska clinging to a 35-29 lead in the final minutes. In two games, Martinez has five runs of 30 yards or more.

He also had pass completions of 20, 38, 42, 43 and 53 yards Saturday.

Martinez said Fresno State's defense went away from what it showed in an opening-game loss to Cal and caused NU some problems in the option game.

Trailing 17-14 at halftime, Nebraska needed to make offensive adjustments.

"The whole offense got together at halftime and talked about what to do to exploit what they were doing," Martinez said. Of the first-half struggles on offense, he said: "Great teams come back. I'm glad our team came back to win."

The adjustments allowed other players -- like freshmen Jamal Turner and Kenny Bell at receiver and junior tight end Kyler Reed -- to be at the receiving end of some of Martinez's big plays.

"You saw how explosive our offense can be," Nebraska coach Bo Pelini said. "We caught them in some looks and showed we could go over the top and hurt them in a hurry."

Diversity in the offense came as a relief to Martinez.

"I'm glad it's not just on me," he said.

Martinez wasn't perfect, throwing two interceptions. He also completed less than 50 percent of his passes.

"We want him to clean those things up," Pelini said. "No one's perfect. But he's only played 15 games as a starter. A lot of people would take what he did tonight. I'm glad he's on our team."

Reach Sports Editor Darnell Dickson at ddickson@journalstar.com or 402-473-7320.