Nov. 13, 2000
by Steve Bent
No matter where you go in South Bend, everybody is talking Notre Dame football. Whether they praise the coaching staff, relive the last-second wins over Purdue and Air Force or replay the close losses to Nebraska and Michigan State, everybody has something to say.
A big part of success in 2000 is the team unity and unique chemistry shown on and off the field. One major contributor to that unity is Irish senior tackle Casey Robin.
"The past few seasons were tough because there wasn't as much chemistry between players as you would like to see," Robin said.
"I think we are successful this year for the opposite reason. There is a lot of chemistry and character on this year's team. I consider myself a big part of this unity. In 1998, (former Irish lineman) Mike Rosenthal played as a leader, and so do I."
Although Robin sees limited action, he considers his role to be instrumental in the overall success of the team. He does little things to make sure he is doing his part in helping the team grow together and win.
"Every Thursday night I have the offensive line over for dinner. We have a great time laughing, joking around, and of course, eating," says the Louisiana native.
"When you make football fun, you enjoy it more."
If you have the opportunity to talk to him, you realize Robin definitely holds a key that unlocks the door to a successful 2000 football season. He is easy to talk to, humorous, caring and very friendly, the essential part of any and every team.
Every team needs one guy who can always keep spirits high. For the Irish, Robin is that guy.
With that in mind, it seems unfitting his most coveted possession as a child was a stuffed armadillo named Army, an animal usually living alone.
"I slept with him every night as a child. I was completely infatuated with him. I loved him," said Robin.
Although Robin is more gregarious than Army, he is exactly like the little stuffed toy. Robin is hard and armor-covered on the football field, but soft underneath that padding and protection.
"On the field, I consider myself to be tough, quiet and unselfish. I'll help the team in any way possible. I am more than willing to go wherever the coaches need me," replied the 6-7 senior.
How can you consider him as anything but a leader when his favorite movie is "Gladiator" because of "the respect he had for his men and the respect his men had for him."
Add that to the fact that Robin emulated former Oakland Raider Hall of Famer and lineman Howie Long when he was a kid.
"He had great class and he was smart. On the field he was tough and he never really complained. He was just awesome!"
Robin also uses the word awesome in describing his experience at Notre Dame.
"God has a reason for everything. I am very proud of getting into Notre Dame. It has been an awesome experience that will help me in the rest of my life, and I could not have succeeded without help from God."
The successes Robin has had at Notre Dame will surely follow him throughout his life with his unique personality. Upon graduation, he would like to work in finance.
"I am interested in the stock market. I wouldn't mind being a broker, or doing something in investment securities," Robin says.
He would also like to have a nice little family saying, "I want a couple of kids that become domers. They can do anything they want. I would rather see them play tennis, golf or something a little less intense, but I would also love to see them play football."
God has definitely blessed Notre Dame with a man like Casey Robin. His unique personality and ability to create camaraderie goes to show you can learn a lot from football. There is more to the game than scoring touchdowns, and this young man from Covington, La., has proven that.
The results of this year's Irish squad prove it, too.