Greater Atlanta Christian (Norcross, GA) standout linebacker Christian Robinson is one of the top defensive prospects in the Peach State this recruiting year, and the athletic linebacker, who has family ties to the South Carolina program, was on hand for USC’s annual Garnet and Black Game last weekend. Where do the Gamecocks stand with this top defensive target? Read inside to find out.
The 6’3”, 200 pound Robinson, who runs an impressive 4.5 second forty yard dash, has grown up following the South Carolina program because his dad, Kenneth Robinson, played linebacker for the Gamecocks in the 1980’s. However, while Robinson may have been familiar with USC before his visit to Columbia last weekend, he couldn’t help but be impressed with the enthusiasm that Head Coach Steve Spurrier is generating around the Carolina football program.
“It went really well. I got to go back to my dad’s old school and see everything. I talked with Coach Spurrier for a good while and just had a good time,” said Robinson. “I watched their spring game and saw their new jerseys. The atmosphere was electric. For a spring game, it was unbelievable. I‘ve been to a couple spring games, but that seemed like it was a normal game. How everybody was pumped up just to see a spring game was something that stood out to me and showed that there‘s a lot of excitement around this season for the Gamecocks.”
According to Robinson, he left Columbia with an even better impression of the Gamecocks after seeing the direction that their program is headed.
“I’ve always thought of the Gamecocks as being a good football team and a good school and everything. After going there this past weekend, though, I was just impressed with the direction that it’s going. Coach Spurrier wants to win an SEC Championship, and with the way that they’re handling things over there, I can see that they can do that this year. That’s exciting.”
Robinson is being recruited by Coach Shane Beamer for the Gamecocks, and he said that he has developed a strong relationship with Beamer that stretches beyond just football.
“It’s been really fun getting to know him. I know who his dad is at Virginia Tech, and I’ve enjoyed getting to know him. He’s a younger coach, and he knows how to communicate with younger players. He just talks about normal things, like he asks me how my day is going, and he doesn’t really come out and talk football the whole time. He talks to me about my life and stuff. That’s something I really like about Coach Beamer.”
The athletic Peach State prospect has seen his offer list grow to seven in recent weeks, including landing an offer from SEC-West powerhouse LSU on Thursday night. However, Robinson is not ready to name any favorites until he gets a chance to visit several of the schools that are pursuing him.
“I just got an offer from LSU. Georgia offered me a couple weeks ago, and I also have offers from South Carolina, Vanderbilt, Duke, Wake Forest, and NC State. At this point, I’m just trying to narrow down the list a little bit. As of now, all the schools that have offered me are really good schools, and each of them needs to be taken with the same amount of importance. I want to be able to go to each school and meet the coaches and people that I’d be around. Right now there’s not one school or a couple schools that stand out. They’re all great schools that I can see myself playing for.”
Robinson, who said that South Carolina, Georgia, Vanderbilt, and Duke are currently recruiting him the hardest, discussed how his family ties to the Gamecock program impacts his recruitment.
“My dad isn’t pushing me to go to South Carolina or anywhere really. I’ve been around South Carolina a lot more, so it appears to most people that they would be one of my top schools. I really like the atmosphere there, but I want to see all the schools. Everything’s even right now, but my dad going to South Carolina just helps me knowing the school and the people there.”
Robinson said that he will look for a few key factors when deciding on the school of his choice.
“Location, football atmosphere, and academics is most important. The coaches are also one of the main things, because I want to be able to go to a place where I like the coaches and the coaches want my best interest. That’s important to me.”
When asked if he had set a timeframe for a decision, Robinson stated that with all of the increased attention he’s getting, he is going to take his time and check out his options.
“I did (have a timeframe) about a month ago, but with things starting to get going, I really want to visit the schools that I’m going to be serious about. For that to happen, it’s going to take a little time, so it’s maybe going to be a couple months until I decide.”
Robinson, who led the Spartan defense in tackles as a junior last season, described what strengths he brings to the football field.
“I’m a faster linebacker, and I can cover receivers. I think that’s why I’m getting the kind of interest that I am because I can be split out on a receiver, and I can cover him. I think that my size and agility help me in getting around and getting past linemen to make tackles. I’d say I’m a quick linebacker, and I can read plays well too.”
After falling in the third round of the state playoffs last season to eventual state champion Dublin, Robinson has set a few goals for his senior season, none of which are more important to him than returning GAC to its powerhouse status atop the Region 6B-AA ranks this fall.
“Our goals don’t change at GAC. We always want to win a state championship. Every year, that's what we try to do at GAC. For personal goals, I want to be able to get stronger. I’ve been strong in the past, but I want to get my upper body a little stronger and be able to use my arms a lot more in taking on linemen and getting past people. Beyond that, I just want to enjoy my senior season.”
Robinson said he plans to attend camps at Georgia, South Carolina, Vanderbilt, and Duke this summer.
Discuss this article on GamecockAnthem's Message Boards