Robinson makes most of chance
BY JOHN E. HOOVER World Sports Writer
Monday, March 01, 2010
3/01/10 at 10:41 AM
Bryant states his case at Combine
OSU's Robinson on the rise, draft expert says
INDIANAPOLIS — Zac Robinson led Oklahoma State to three consecutive bowl games, set the Cowboys' career records for passing yards and total offense and guided his team to 24 victories in almost three seasons as the starter.
Now, though, he's virtually starting all over.
Despite a strong college resume, Robinson isn't a star prospect at this week's NFL Scouting Combine. He doesn't have prototype NFL arm strength or the ideal stature. And he didn't play in a pro-style offense at OSU. Robinson is a little behind the curve in the eyes of many NFL scouts.
But such ideas haven't dimmed his spirits. Whether he's taken in the middle rounds, late rounds or not at all when the NFL Draft rolls around in April, Robinson is working harder than ever and keeping his mind positive.
"Obviously, I want to perform well, run well, throw," he said, "but have fun while you're at it. You're only going to be here one time. If you're stressing out about it, you're probably not going to be having much fun. So, take it seriously, but at the same time, you have to have fun with it."
At Oklahoma State, Robinson was frequently as effective as a runner as he was a passer. In the Cowboys' spread-option attack, he specialized in misdirection runs, short throws and occasional deep balls to talented receivers (Dez Bryant, Adarius Bowman) in one-on-one coverage.
Robinson has tried diligently to shed his "dual-threat" label, polishing his passing form, his drop-backs and even his center exchange technique with quarterback gurus Bob and Rob Johnson.
His training partner for almost two months in Irvine, Calif., was Texas' Colt McCoy.
Robinson was a hit for scouts at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala. — more for his technical subtleties than for his performance.
"At least that's the feedback I got about my footwork," he said. "Being from the spread, I think they were surprised at how fluid my drop-backs were and the ability to read defenses from under center. ... To be able to show that at the Senior Bowl was definitely big."
In Mobile, he learned under the Miami Dolphins' coaching staff and got a real taste of his future.
"It was a lot of fun," he said. "It was a lot different than what we were doing (at OSU). ... There just wasn't a whole lot of five-step, seven-step (drops). But I would work on my own after practice. ... I just kind of did that to get ready for this."
Robinson has similarly opened a few eyes so far at the combine. During Sunday's workouts, he ran unofficial 40 times of 4.66 and 4.69, and his official time of 4.71 was third-best among QBs. His vertical leap of 35 inches was second to the new record of 38.5 set by Florida's Tim Tebow.
Former NFL quarterback Jim Miller, now an NFL analyst for Sirius Satellite Radio, said Robinson is "growing on me a little.
"Kind of a glider, a good little athlete," Miller said. "In all the drills, he's just solid. ... In all of his drops, his release, he hit every throw. I don't think he's a starter in the league, but I think he's a solid guy that can back up eventually."
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Former OSU quarterback Zac Robinson is hoping to make an impression at the NFL Combine, which runs until Tuesday. STEPHEN HOLMAN / Tulsa World