MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–During his freshman season at West Virginia, Kenny Robinson made a name for himself.
The 6-foot-2, 198-pound free safety appeared in 13 games last year, starting eight. He finished the season as the sixth-leading tackler for the Mountaineers with 46 tackles, including 32 solo stops, two tackles for loss, three interceptions, returning two for touchdowns and three pass breakups.
Against Delaware State, Robinson made his first career start at cornerback. However, injuries caused him to move to safety.
“Honestly, I really was a safety the whole time, and then my coach just threw me out there and said, “Just Ball,” because he figured I was just an athlete,” he said. “At practice, I would go out to corner to just have fun and practice, and he liked that aspect of me. I just like to compete, so he threw me out there, and I guess it just worked out.”
The Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania native had a season full of ups and downs on a defense that struggled throughout the course of the year.
“Starting out as a freshman, just dressing and traveling really hurt me a lot because I wasn’t playing,” Robinson said. “But as the season went on and things started to develop, my coach started to believe in me. I had to step up and play a role that wasn’t really expected of me, so last season was a lot of ups and downs. I just had to work through, keep my head down, keep working and make the best of it.”
As his sophomore season rapidly approaches, Robinson is preparing for his role as one of the crucial member of WVU’s secondary.
“We know that once those lights come on a Saturday, the kid can play,” assistant coach Matt Caponi said. “It’s just being more disciplined and more consistent in his play throughout practice and managing the grind of camp and everything. So far, he’s done pretty well. He’s still young, so he’s still learning, still trying to master his craft. But I’m pleased with him so far. We still have two weeks to go, so I expect him to get better in those two weeks.”
Even at a young age, the Imani Christian Academy graduate posses many positive attributes that assure he has a bright future.
“Kenny Robinson has a short memory,” defensive coordinator Tony Gibson said. “He has no fear, and we have a few guys like that on our football team. The other one everyone knows is (linebacker) David Long. But Kenny will take a chance because he sees something and will react to something and can make that play.”
With his no fear mentality, great things are to come for the sophomore.
Photo Credit: Kelsie LeRose, BGS