- Tea partiers turn on Capitol Hill budget deal
- Budget deal to get quick vote in the House
- Comma on!: Twitter erupts over Obama-Castro ‘marriage’
- Sebelius calls for review of Obamacare rollout woes
- American dream dying, but many see free market as solution: Poll
- Air Force base in South Carolina boots Nativity scene
- Israel poised for a $173M boost from the U.S. for missile defense
- Leon Panetta named as source of ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ scriptwriter’s information
- Mandela service sign language interpreter: ‘He made up his own signs’
- Pope Francis named Time’s ‘Person of the Year’
Robinson keeps nothing in reserve with Terps
It was quite a while ago when Jamarr Robinson last took a meaningful snap at quarterback.
As in the fall of 2005.
That figures to change this year because the Maryland sophomore enters the season as Chris Turner's backup. Robinson has grayshirted and redshirted, played in JV games and traveled throughout his college career.
But with coach Ralph Friedgen and offensive coordinator James Franklin signaling that Robinson will play at some point this season, it has created a much different situation for the longtime reserve.
"I really don't know what to do," Robinson said. "I'm so excited. I have to keep all that inside and not show it, but inside I'm going crazy."
Robinson capably hides his nerves, falling back on an even-keel approach to many things. But some of his stoicism was probably forged from surviving a frenetic start to his career.
He remained home for what could have been his first semester, delaying enrollment by a semester and joining the program in the spring of 2007. He began as the No. 6 quarterback, with the opportunity to learn the Terrapins' system.
But Jeremy Ricker decided to transfer near the end of spring practice. And Bobby Sheahin bolted during camp for Division III Salisbury. Then Josh Portis was suspended for cheating on a pop quiz.
When Jordan Steffy was sidelined with a concussion, it left the untested Robinson a heartbeat away from playing at a time when the scheme was still swirling in his mind.
"The first [year] was the worst, coming in under Coach Friedgen's offense, which I really had no clue about, and then being second-string," Robinson said. "That's when I was really nervous because I really didn't know what the hell was going on."
He does now. Perhaps it's because he's in his second year in Franklin's system. Some of it, as roommate and receiver Torrey Smith believes, surely stems from nightly study sessions with the DVD player.
And part of it's just the maturation of a player who has always exploited his quickness but is gradually developing into an all-around quarterback.
"He's night-and-day compared to last year," Franklin said. "He's probably a little behind where Chris was last year. But he makes up for it because he's dynamic. He can make things happen when things aren't perfect. I think we can win in this league with Jamarr. I hate to say it, but there's some things that remind you of a Russell Wilson-type guy. That's some of the things I see in him."
Wilson isn't a bad blueprint to follow, considering his slippery yet mistake-free ways were the reason N.C. State reached a bowl game a season ago. But even though Robinson impressed with three long touchdowns passes to Quintin McCree in the spring game, he still must make progress.
Friedgen invoked another impressive name - former Georgia Tech quarterback Joe Hamilton - as a comparison. Both guys exploited their aggression to make things happen. But as younger players, both had a way of making poor decisions and not bothering to read safeties to wipe out the gains of their assertiveness.
That was evident in last fall's JV games, when Robinson demonstrated he could salvage something from a bad play but moments later secure little in a favorable situation.
"He can scramble; he can run the ball. He has an evadability," Friedgen said. "He makes some plays in practice that keep a dead play alive and then makes a play. Then he'll do something where he'll just throw it into coverage. Once he gets that corrected, then you're going to see a guy who's going to be a pretty good quarterback."
Friedgen is determined to find playing time for Robinson, preferably at the end of lopsided victories. But with Turner departing after the season, the Terps would like to enter 2010 with a quarterback who has taken real snaps.
"I've been thinking about that and waiting for that chance since I got here," Robinson said. "Hopefully it comes sooner than later now. I'm closer now than I was a long time ago."
A game setting probably would help Robinson, who was on the punt-block team for one game last year, iron out some of his inconsistencies. He's optimistic no nerves will surface when that time comes.
And make no mistake: The time is coming soon.
"Franklin's told me I'm going to play," Robinson said. "He hasn't said when or how often. But they said I'm going to play. That's a confidence booster. I'm just working harder now to maximize that [chance to] play when I get it."
About the Author
Patrick Stevens has covered Maryland and other Mid-Atlantic college sports for more than a decade. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- George Mason's defense dissipates in 84-74 loss to Northeastern
- Maryland's Pe'Shon Howard willing to let others put ball in the basket
- At 7-5, George Mason looks on the bright side entering CAA play
- Terps beat IUPUI, set for ACC after final tuneup
- Maryland's Jake Layman shows signs of progress in freshman season
Latest Blog Entries
By Donald Lambro
Growth spikes are little more than trend-free anomalies
- Teen thugs in DC run wild -- even while wearing GPS ankle bracelets
- New budget accord saves $23 billion -- after $65 billion spending spree
- Obama takes 'selfie' at Mandela's funeral service
- VEGAS RULES: Harry Reid pushed feds to change ruling for casino's big-money foreigners
- CARSON: Why did the founders give us the Second Amendment?
- More than a quarter million sign up for Obamacare in November
- Gov't Motors: Obama fudges math on auto bailout, $10.5 billion loss for taxpayers
- MILLER: Dick Heller challenges D.C.s gun registration, files for summary judgement in Heller II
- Obama's antics at Nelson Mandela tribute: Jovial conversation, handshake with Raul Castro
- Somber duty: U.S. presidents in hot demand at Mandela's memorial
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
All of the world’s problems, solved on your back porch
Human interest stories to feed interest, satisfy curiosity and see outside the box.
Politics, economics, and business from a real world perspective.
News and views on the Civil War.
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow