Oct. 27, 2011
By Briana Coyne
Every time Tommy Rees completes a pass or Cierre Wood rushes for a first down, senior offensive guard Trevor Robinson and the rest of the offensive line have done their job. And this is what matters most to Robinson.
Growing up in Elkhorn, Nebraska, Robinson started playing football in third grade and progressed into the position of offensive guard as he got older.
"I do not think anybody watches football when they are little and dreams of being an offensive guard," Robinson jokes. "But, that's what was in the cards for me."
Since then, Robinson has taken on this position with perseverance and commitment. His Midwestern roots and the strong legacy of Nebraska football have helped shape Robinson as a player.
"The Midwestern stereotype is being hardworking and not afraid to get in it and just do what you need to do," Robinson states. "I'm sure that is something that goes hand-in-hand with an offensive line player."
Offensive line coach and running game coordinator, Ed Warinner, recognizes all the time and effort Robinson puts into every practice and game.
"There are a lot of talented guys who don't play very good football. He is a talented guy who plays good football, because he knows how to use his talents by playing with good technique, executing his assignments, and it is important to him too."
Because of his dedication to the game and his team, Robinson doesn't let the distractions that come along with playing at a high profile football school bother him. Often described as an "old school player" for this mentality, Robinson embraces this comparison.
"When you think of old school football, you think of being physical and not being flashy or worrying about stuff that doesn't necessarily matter," Robinson explains. "I just really try to focus on what I can control and things that matter."
Robinson even sports a "throw back" facemask while playing. In this sense, Warinner describes Robinson as a "meat and potatoes" kind of guy, because he doesn't need the newest or flashiest gear - just the equipment that helps him play well.
Being part of the offensive line, Robinson recognizes that neither he nor his fellow offensive linesmen receive any media attention...unless they are doing poorly. However, Robinson doesn't mind not constantly being in the limelight.
"That is the nature of the offensive line. When you are doing your job you really kind of blend in and that's okay with me," Robinson adds. "I don't need the media and the recognition."
This attribute is apparent to his coaches as well, who commend him for his consistent work ethic. As a result, the coaches named Robinson as well as senior cornerback Robert Blanton game day captains for the USF game that started Notre Dame's 2011 football season.
"He would play just as hard if it was in front of 20,000 or 81,000 fans," Warinner says. "He will play just as hard whether we are on TV or we are not on TV."
If you look up Robinson's career statistics, the only numbers you will see next to his name are the number of games he has played for Notre Dame. For Robinson, he doesn't need anything else, because playing football is the reason why he has worked so hard on and off the gridiron.
"I would like to be remembered as somebody who led by example," Robinson states simply.
Furthermore, Warinner highlights that Robinson is a reliable player, who he knows will put in the time to watch film and study his notes or tip sheets.
"He just cares about the feedback he gets from the coaches, from me, and from his teammates."
So far this season, the offensive line has allowed only five sacks in six games. Robinson accredits the success of the offensive line to the cohesiveness and experience of the group, which includes four veterans.
"You know the offensive line by nature sticks to itself more than other positions so you don't really see a lot of rah-rah stuff from us on Saturdays, but we like to think that we lead on the field. It always starts with the offensive line and that is how we are trying to do it."
So the next time the Irish complete a pass or gain a first down, remember to acknowledge the hard work of Robinson and the rest of the offensive line. Even though he doesn't want the attention, it certainly would be well deserved.