Lewisville (Texas) Hebron running back Derke Robinson. Robinson has been highly sought after by the Arizona coaches since early this spring and today he pulled the trigger and became an Arizona Wildcat.
"I committed to Coach (Josh) Heupel and Coach (Mike) Stoops today," said the 6-foot, four star Texas stud. "They were both really excited that I want to go to Arizona and that is one of the things that really sold me on Arizona. They are all really excited about football. They all have a lot of passion for the game and that is one thing that I really liked about them."
Robinson officially visited Tucson for Homecoming weekend and was in the stands when the Wildcats upset unbeaten UCLA 52-14 three weeks ago.
"The atmosphere and the game was awesome," he said. "My host was Xavier Kelley from Denton Ryan and he is a good guy. I played against him last year when he was still there and he showed me a real good time. He was all over the field when we played them."
While on his visit Robinson also got to hang out with some of the other younger players on the Cat roster, most notably some of the numerous guys from the state of Texas.
"I hung out with Mike Thomas and (Syndric) Steptoe and Willie (Tuitama)," he said. "They are all real good guys and they were all real down to earth. They didn't treat me like a recruit, they treated me like I was already a player on the team and they all told me that I could be a part of a great program."
Robinson noticed the amount of Wildcats from the state of Texas and he sees that as a very positive sign for him.
"They really have a lot of guys from Texas," he said. "I like that because there are a lot of guys that I can relate to and with. I won't be the only guy in a new place that far from home. There are guys there that will help me with the transition and that I can really relate to."
Even though he liked every aspect of his visit to Arizona, including the players on the roster and the early playing time available it was something else that pushed Arizona over the top for Robinson.
"I know that they lose their top two backs this year because they are seniors," he remarked. "I know I can play early but it is the coaches that really sold me. Coach Heupel and really all of the coaches really treated me well. They way they treated me was the key factor for me. They didn't really treat me like a recruit. I know I am a good player and an elite prospect or whatever but they never treated me like that. They treated me like a person and not just a football player."
That aspect of Robinson's recruitment also hit home with Derke's father, Ronnie, who played running back at Texas from 1980-1983.
"You know the coaching staff there truly does care about my son," said the elder Robinson. "For me that is what set them apart from most everyone else. They truly do care about my son personally and not just as a prospect. I think that really made Derke feel that Arizona was the place for him."
Ronnie Robinson continued, "Through everything they would always text message Derke words of encouragement or they would congratulate him if his team won a game. They always wanted to make sure that Derke was happy and that everything was going well on and off the playing field. I am happy he decided that Arizona was his school and I am happy to be sending him there."
Derke went on to comment on what he thought of the head man of Arizona Football, Mike Stoops.
"Great guy, just a great guy," he said. "I feel that I can relate to him. He is young and his passion for the game is amazing and the whole coaching staff has that same passion. I am really excited to get there and to play for Arizona. I am real excited to be a Wildcat."
Robinson admitted that the transition to move that far away from home would be a difficult one but he said that his parents are going to make it as easy as possible for him.
"My mom is thinking about moving out there with me so that would be great to have her close to me there," he said. "Plus my dad said that anytime I wanted to go home that I shouldn't worry because he would make sure that I could get home whenever I needed to."
Derke, who will follow in his father's footsteps as a major college running back, is extremely tight with his dad.
"Man, sometimes I forget he is my dad," he said. "I know he has my back and he wants what is best for me. Anything I ever need and I know he will he will do it for me, he has always had my back no matter what."
Derke also laughingly admitted that, "Don't get me wrong now, I am a real momma's boy too, but my dad and I have always been good friends. But I am still a momma's boy though."
With the commitment of Derke Robinson Arizona gets not only a running back with amazing football skills but they also get a very humble young man with a great head on his shoulders. Derke is definitely one of the rare combinations of star athlete and humble family man.