Maryland is always on the lookout for primetime playmakers who can make defenders miss in the open field, and one junior who the Terps could make a push for is Montclair (N.J.) athlete Elijah Robinson. The 6-foot-2, 185-pounder, who attends a school the Terps' Keith Dudzinksi has recruited in the past, is coming off a monster season that ended in a North 1 Group 5 state championship.
As a quarterback, Robinson passed for 1,400 yards and 21 touchdowns, and as a runner he piled up 1,500 more yards and 14 scores. He also caught a touchdown pass in the state title game, giving him 36 for the season.
"I had a great year and obviously my team had a fantastic year," said Robinson, who just recovered from a ligament tear in his thumb and is back in the weight room. "Now we're looking to do more of the same next year and build up the chemistry that got us a [championship] last year."
While Robinson is focused on improving his own game, he's also dabbled in the recruiting game. The junior picked up his first two offers from Massachusetts and Temple last spring, and during the season added Virginia and Nebraska. He said a couple programs are giving him a look as a quarterback, but most coaches have said he'd be a receiver or running back in their program.
"I have those four offers, and then Georgia Tech told me they're close to offering. They came in [during the open period] and said they plan on coming back," Robinson said. "And the only other school I talked to recently was Rutgers. There's a couple others in there, but [Tech and RU] are the main two right now."
One of the "others" showing interest is Maryland, which hasn't been too involved yet but could make a harder push as the offseason develops. Robinson was actually in College Park, Md., during the fall for UMD's game against Virginia, a 27-26 Terps defeat.
"I actually went down at the suggestion of my friend, Austin Stevens, who said Maryland was beautiful," Robinson said. "When I went it was actually raining, but it was still pretty nice. I really enjoyed myself, and I had a chance to talk to one of the coaches and he seemed like they wanted me to play for them."
Robinson said he doesn't currently know much about Maryland, but he plans to research the Terps should they jump on him. He'd also like to schedule a junior day visit if Dudzinski and Co. get in touch via social media and the like.
"I might get back down to Maryland; it's a school I'm learning more about," Robinson said. "I have to find out more about them. They haven't talked to me recently, though, so we'll see."
As of right now, Robinson would like to set up junior day visits to Nebraska and Georgia Tech, two programs firmly on his radar. He'd also like to hear from the likes of Clemson, Stanford and North Carolina, though those programs haven't contacted him yet. His hometown school, Rutgers, is also in play, but Robinson admitted he'd prefer to get away from home for college.
"So far I've been to UMass, Virginia, Rutgers and Maryland. Virginia was pretty nice when I went to their game against Virginia Tech, and Rutgers is good too -- I've talked to their coaches a few times," Robinson said. "Maryland was very nice too. But right not I don't really have any favorites. I wasn't much of a college football fan growing up, so I mainly just look at what schools I might fit best at."
Fitting "best" mainly entails how a program plans to use him. Ideally, he'd like the offensive coordinator to lay out a plan for him, detailing exactly what his responsibilities would be and how they planned to get the ball in his hands.
"One, I want to find a good fit with how they're going to use me. Two, I don't want to go too far from home, but I do want to be out of state," Robinson said. "And three, I want to go somewhere that challenges me academically."
Don't expect Robinson to make a decision anytime soon. He said he'll likely drag out his recruiting until next winter, after his senior season.
"I'm nowhere near ready to make an informed decision," Robinson said. "I have to see everything that comes in and see more schools."
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