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Irish A-to-Z: Corey Robinson

Aug 17, 2014, 1:02 PM EDT

Steffon Batts, Corey Robinson AP

Among the fleet of celebrity sons playing on Notre Dame’s football team, sophomore Corey Robinson looks poised to make his own name in 2014. The son of Hall of Fame basketball center David Robinson, Corey hasn’t grown into a seven-footer like his father did, but the lanky receiver is a potential mismatch for defenses after being plucked from obscurity on the recruiting trail by the Irish coaching staff.

After a freshman season that saw flashes of very good things, Robinson’s sophomore season looked prime for a breakout, even before the future of No. 1 receiver DaVaris Daniels was thrown into doubt. But paired with fellow sophomore Will Fuller, Robinson could become part of a dynamic duo for the next three seasons, using his length, athleticism and velcro-hands to give the Irish a red zone weapon and a world-class chain mover.

Let’s take a closer look at the San Antonio native.

 

 

COREY ROBINSON
6’4.5″ 215 lbs.
Sophomore, No. 88

 

RECRUITING PROFILE

Notre Dame was the first to offer Robinson, a true developmental decision after Kerry Cooks got eyes on the raw football player who played in the small-school, private San Antonio Christian High. The Irish offer put Robinson on the map, and by the time his recruiting cycle was over, Robinson ascended to a four-star recruit with offers from Iowa, Kansas and North Carolina.

Kelly talked about the the player he thought Robinson could become, after getting him onto campus early as a spring semester enrollee at Notre Dame.

“I think what really impressed us about Corey is that he’s just beginning to blossom,” Kelly said. “He’s just started to take hold in this game of football.  As you know, the Robinson name, pretty familiar. His dad obviously is a great parent and mentor, but he also probably had a little basketball for his sons growing up, and I think that transition out of basketball and focusing on football has given him now this opportunity to continue to grow as a football player. So we think we’ve got a guy early on that has not even come close to tapping his potential.”

 

PLAYING CAREER

Freshman Season (2013): Played in all 13 games for the Irish, starting three at wide receiver. Caught nine passes for 157 yards and one touchdown on the season. His three catches for 54 yards against Michigan State were a season high in yardage. Caught a 35-yard touchdown against Air Force.

 

UPSIDE POTENTIAL

Robinson’s recruitment started as a head-scratcher, with some expecting the Irish coaching staff to turn him into a tight end. But Robinson national profile to improve as people found out about him as a senior committed to Notre Dame, and after a solid week in San Antonio at the U.S. Army All-American game, Robinson looked like an intriguing but raw prospect who was coming into a relatively thin wide receiving depth chart.

After early-enrolling, Robinson wowed fans with his prodigious work on the UND.com practice updates, making circus catches that highlighted incredible hands and height that presented big-time headaches for veteran corner Bennett Jackson… and anybody else that matched up with him.

Robinson is far from a complete player. He’s still got to master route-running and find some explosiveness that’ll help him beat jam-coverage at the line of scrimmage and battle the fact that his long-stride, top-end speed isn’t elite. But considering he made three big catches against Michigan State, a team that decided to play the Irish in all-man coverage, Robinson looks like he’s got the world ahead of him as a receiver, and has received nothing but praise from the Irish coaching staff for going about his business the right way.

 

CRYSTAL BALL

If there’s a prototype for the perfect football player for Notre Dame, Robinson seems pretty close. He’s a top-flight student, a PLS major (Program of Liberal Studies), one of the most demanding and intellectually stimulating majors the university has to offer. That matches up with the Renaissance Man reputation that’s already been hoisted on Robinson, a talented musician who seems to have a knack for just about everything. On the field, he’s got unique physical traits and comes from a family where it’s clear that the gene pool is pretty good, too.

I already expected a huge spike in Robinson’s production, a combination of the sophomore improving, the offense expanding, and a variety of weapons giving Robinson some juicy 1-on-1 matchups. And if DaVaris Daniels is suspended for a lengthy period, Robinson will be hoisted into the starting lineup, forced to play a bigger role on the outside with Chris Brown and Fuller.

The sky seems to be the limit for Robinson. There are still questions that need to be answered, mostly with how he beats tight, physical coverage. But if the Irish can utilize him properly, then Robinson should be a very, very productive player this season.

 

***

The Irish A-to-Z
Josh Atkinson
Nicky Baratti
Alex Bars
Hunter Bivin
Grant Blankenship
Jonathan Bonner
Justin Brent
Kyle Brindza
Chris Brown
Jalen Brown
Greg Bryant
Devin Butler
Jimmy Byrne
Daniel Cage
Amir Carlisle
Austin Collinsworth
Ben Councell
Scott Daly
Sheldon Day
Michael Deeb
Steve Elmer
Matthias Farley
Tarean Folston
Will Fuller
Everett Golson
Jarrett Grace
Conor Hanratty
Eilar Hardy
Mark Harrell
Jay Hayes
Matt Hegarty
Mike Heuerman
Kolin Hill
Corey Holmes
Chase Hounshell
Torii Hunter Jr.
Jarron Jones
DeShone Kizer
Ben Koyack
Christian Lombard
Tyler Luatua
Cole Luke
Nick Martin
Greer Martini
Jacob Matuska
Cam McDaniel
Mike McGlinchey
Colin McGovern
Pete Mokwuah
John Montelus
Kendall Moore
Nyles Morgan
Sam Mustipher
Quenton Nelson
Tyler Newsome
Romeo Okwara
James Onwualu
C.J. Prosise
Anthony Rabasa
Doug Randolph
Max Redfield
Cody Riggs

  1. dickasman - Aug 17, 2014 at 1:34 PM

    In light of Michael Sam’s forst sex in the NFL, Who do you think will be the first ND gay football player from the list above? I’m so glad we can talk about gay n football in a same sentence. What America has been fighting for, equal rights for everyone. It will truly be a tear jerker moment when this happens.

    Go Irish!

    • 1notredamefan - Aug 17, 2014 at 6:03 PM

      You really are like that woman who won’t stop talking… Shoot me now

    • joesimer - Aug 17, 2014 at 8:17 PM

      Damn SEC is getting all the great gay players!

    • 1historian - Aug 18, 2014 at 11:47 AM

      What (tf) are you talking about?

  2. blackirish23 - Aug 17, 2014 at 2:06 PM

    One other intangible that Robinson brings to the field is that he’s a pass interference call waiting to happen.

    Going back and watching the Michigan State game, quite a few of those PI calls against Mi. State came when Robinson was the target. He’s simply a mismatch for your average 5’9″ DB, so it’s a lot easier to take a 15 yard PI call than give up 35 – 40 yards on a deep ball.

    I also do think the more he plays the game, the better he will become and the sky will truly be the limit for this young man.

  3. getsome99 - Aug 17, 2014 at 2:34 PM

    It probably couldn’t hurt for him to add about 10-15 lbs.

  4. liv4nd - Aug 17, 2014 at 2:57 PM

    I don’t know why but I have a good feeling about CR. The circus catches he makes are amazing. Get him some more discipline in route running and he is a Nightmare match up for opposing defenses…can’t wait!!!

  5. 25kgold - Aug 17, 2014 at 3:55 PM

    Randy Moss anyone?

    • bernhtp - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:08 PM

      No. Corey is a great kid and a great addition to the team. With continued development he’ll turn into a big contributor. He has some real upside, maybe up to the next Jeff Samardzija with his size, agility, hands, etc. But Randy Moss was a freakish once-in-a-decade athlete and in totally another league. I wish Randy hadn’t messed up and been able to come to Notre Dame. We might have gotten another NC.

      • nudeman - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:38 PM

        Yes, Lou would have made sure he got at least 15 catches.
        Each year.

        There’s an old line about MIchael Jordan that’s applicable: The only person who could consistently hold him under 20 was Dean Smith.

        That’s the way I feel about Lou.
        As great as Rocket was, he’d have been All Galaxy with almost any other coach.
        Can you imagine what Jimmy Johnson would have done with him?

      • bernhtp - Aug 17, 2014 at 6:17 PM

        You may be right. Lou’s struggled to get Raghib the ball in space. His offense just didn’t lend itself to that. IsMail would have done better in the Jimmy Johnson offense, but even better in a current Oregon-style spread attack. OMG!

        I guess the same is true for Moss, who had similar speed but more size.

  6. jerseyshorendfan1 - Aug 17, 2014 at 3:59 PM

    This kid breaks out this year, first team all-American. Heard it here first. Remember to give me props.

    • papadec - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:46 PM

      joisey – I’ll be at the ND/CUSE game, in your backyard. Maybe we can hoist a beer, or something, to your prophesy being realized by that game?

      • jerseyshorendfan1 - Aug 17, 2014 at 8:11 PM

        Done deal. I’ll be there too. Let’s get a group of these erstwhile Monday morning QB’s from this site together. I’m sure 2 or 3 of ‘em are within a stone’s throw of the Meadowlands, also known as a great place to dump a body (should anyone be on a tri-state crime spree).

        On another note, thanks to KA for putting this article up. Nice to read something positive today. The season must go on!

      • jerseyshorendfan1 - Aug 17, 2014 at 8:30 PM

        To get yas all psyched up for Rice, I looked up Rivals recruiting class rankings for the last 4 years and Rice averages in the low 90’s with no 4 or 5 star players, I mean none. At all. Current line is ND by anywhere from 20.5 to 24.5 pts. Should be enough of a rout that SEC fans (read John Galt) should be ridiculing us for scheduling a cupcake for the opener.

      • don74 - Aug 17, 2014 at 9:24 PM

        Is the McGuffey still with them. CW was hot on him and lost him to Michigan. Transferred to Rice.

        My guess is a win. Game close in the first half. ND dominating the second half and winning 34-13.

      • blackirish23 - Aug 17, 2014 at 9:55 PM

        I’ll be at the CUSE game as well and would love to grab a drink with you guys….if you’ll have me.

      • 1historian - Aug 18, 2014 at 11:50 AM

        P – when you begin your hoistathon I would appreciate your hoisting one for moi who will probably be in the throngs of yet another 3 state crime spree.

      • 1historian - Aug 18, 2014 at 12:21 PM

        Re. – the ‘CUSE’ game. I was at the one in 1962 at ND when Syracuse had Ernie Davis (aka the first African-American to win the Heisman Trophy) and they were ahead 15-14 and it came down to a last second field goal by ND and it was blocked but Syracuse was penalized for roughing the kicker and so ND got another chance to kick the FG only 15 yards closer and the kick was good and we all went nuts.

        Context – The Cuban Missile Crisis, John Huarte was a 4th string sophomore QB on a Joe Kuharich coached team, Ara Parshegian was coach at Northwestern and they ALWAYS beat us, there was no library per se, ergo no ‘Touchdown Jesus’, if one stood at the circle and looked out there was one large field – no Post Office, no NOTHIN’.

        There was Gilbert’s store on Campus – “One Man Tells Another”.

        Jerseyshorefan – thanks for the suggestion about my 3-stater, but in my dotage I am limited to – well, I won’t tell you what I’m limited to. (BTW – I was born in Jersey – MCH in Trenton – and when I was a kid going to school we would go by the house in Hopewell from which Lindbergh’s baby had been kidnapped and Albert Einstein was a professor at Princeton.)

        Favor – hoist one to an old coot up in Maine.

        File under – Ruminations of an old coot.

      • jerseyshorendfan1 - Aug 18, 2014 at 3:23 PM

        histy – I just went by the Einstein house in Princeton Borough a few days ago. Imagine being taught by that guy? Or being his neighbor? Seeing Einstein taking out his garbage, trimming the rose bush, etc. That would be weird. Anyway, rest assured the Jersey crew will offer up a toast in your honor (you old coot….hilarious).

      • jerseyshorendfan1 - Aug 18, 2014 at 3:25 PM

        P.S. You can take the boy out of Jersey but you can’t take the Jersey out of the boy. I knew there was something I liked about you.

      • gbsk - Aug 18, 2014 at 5:03 PM

        Historian, I went to the Syracuse game too. It was actually in ’61. I don’t recall seeing you there. ;O))

  7. getsome99 - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:10 PM

    I don’t know if he has the speed to be a Randy Moss, but I was thinking Maurice Stovall. Add about 15 lbs of muscle and he’ll be unstoppable next year.

    • nudeman - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:56 PM

      Adding 15 lbs is what I think he did this past offseason.
      Another 15 and he’ll be electric, as long as it’s good weight and not from pizza and chips

  8. 25kgold - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:11 PM

    Keyshawn Johnson anyone?

    • dillonbigred - Aug 17, 2014 at 9:18 PM

      Get him the damn ball!

  9. danirish - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:20 PM

    What I hope is that ND develops him into a complete receiver. What I fear is that he will line up at the 15 yard line and be used for the &%%^$^% jump ball pass that ND relies on…a lot. Of course if it works!

    I agree with others – if he could add 10-16 pounds and who knows if he is done growing – imagine his senior year if he is 6’9′ 235 lbs!

    Robinson, Fuller, Carlise, Brent and Brown all have a very good opportunity to show ND and the world that they are the real deal. Of those mentioned I think Fuller, Robinson and Brent (hunch) become the men! Of course I think we will see a lot of catches coming out of the backfield from Bryant (Good God! Imagine him on a well executed screen!) & Folston.

    As I’ve been saying for awhile – don’t care who plays, starts, whatever – JUST WIN BABY!

    GO IRISH!

    • bernhtp - Aug 17, 2014 at 6:27 PM

      I don’t think Corey has grown since he enrolled 1.5 years ago, so it seems highly doubtful that he will take his dad’s late-bloomer path and get significantly taller.

      He’ll be used in sideline passes in addition to the red zone. I think he needs a bit more weight/strength to be effective and durable up the middle.

  10. 25kgold - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:26 PM

    My question is who leaves early for the NFL? Bryant -or- Folston

    • papadec - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:50 PM

      25k – let’s worry about this season, before we worry about any future seasons.

    • danirish - Aug 17, 2014 at 4:56 PM

      Don’t want to think about it right now but my money is Bryant if he is all we hope he is.

      • liv4nd - Aug 17, 2014 at 5:08 PM

        Let’s just beat the $hit out of Rice…

  11. 25kgold - Aug 17, 2014 at 7:17 PM

    hell (sorry Father; I did use lowercase), let’s beat these guys!!!!

  12. irishmob89 - Aug 17, 2014 at 7:26 PM

    He’s already added 20 pounds since he’s come to Notre Dame so he’s already stronger than last year. The best part about this kid is he doesn’t make the same mistake twice. He’s highly intelligent and after learning the news about DaVaris, KeiVarae, Ishaq, and Kendall, it’s refreshing to read about a kid who represents Notre Dame very well. Robinson is a kid that has the potential to have a breakout season.

    • bernhtp - Aug 17, 2014 at 7:50 PM

      Let’s not prejudge anyone, though it doesn’t look good.

      • don74 - Aug 17, 2014 at 10:08 PM

        Bern,

        It might be the cocktail before dinner but I don’t get it. Prejudge who? And why doesn’t it look good?

        mobs comment was after the news of the four it’s refreshing to read……………………

        What doesn’t look good? Robinson, the shortcut four, the breakout season.

      • upthera44 - Aug 17, 2014 at 10:15 PM

        Any updates from the rumor mills? I don’t know the good sites for that sort of thing. Does there seem to be any truth to the claim that charges might be dismissed against Daniels/Russell? Maybe someone completely made that up – not sure.

  13. 25kgold - Aug 17, 2014 at 8:36 PM

    I think the new UA uniforms will be released tomorrow. (per my inside source)

    Go Irish!

    • sjb198 - Aug 18, 2014 at 8:12 AM

      my source confirms. wsbt channel 22 morning news. lol

  14. bigedefense - Aug 17, 2014 at 11:48 PM

    Hey upthera44, the best (and free) message board for all things Irish that I’ve found is Irisheny.com. There are some guys on there that seem to have the scoop before anyone. Also, it’s not a bunch of idiots like the village idiot on here (jg). Check it out if you have a chance. PM me on there if you do & I will send ya some vbucks to gamble with. (They bet on games & use vbucks. No value to them, just for fun)

  15. onward2victory - Aug 18, 2014 at 3:08 AM

    Can the school legally access a students email records?? I would be lawyering up big time if I were these guys. Especially for dd, KVR, and Williams, a suspension here could cost them millions in potential NFL earnings.

  16. standingdomer - Aug 18, 2014 at 12:16 PM

    “fleet of celebrity sons” – clever Navy/Admiral reference Keith.

  17. 1historian - Aug 18, 2014 at 12:26 PM

    My (unsolicited) prediction – the team – and the University – together adopt an “us against the world” mentality.

    Remember that there is nothing quite as dangerous as a Irishman who is backed into a corner – he’ll (we’ll) fight our way out of it.

    We’ll be fine

    • papadec - Aug 18, 2014 at 4:05 PM

      hist – you could head west to NY, then south to NJ, and avoid most of the areas you have devastated in prior crime sprees.

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