After traveling to Ann Arbor for Michigan's opening football game a few weeks back, it appeared to be only a matter of time before Saint John (IN) Lake Central SF Glenn Robinson III announced he would become a Wolverine. His increased comfort with the players and coaches at Michigan combined with the approval of his parents seemingly left him confident that Ann Arbor would be the best place to spend his college career. At the same time, he was a tad hesitant to fully take the plunge due to his concern over making an emotional choice. Monday he finally concluded that the emotional choice and the right choice were one in the same.
"The (evaluation) period just started where (college coaches) could come out, and the first day Valparaiso, IUPUI, and Michigan were there (at his open gym)," Robinson reported. "Coach Beilein and Coach Meyer came. I just thought, ‘I like everything about Michigan.' After all the visits that I took, I thought it was just a great place for me. With it not being too far away from home and everything that I have heard about Michigan, everything just came together."
Newly settled upon his choice, all that was left was to inform those closest to him about the news. He would clue other interested parties in a little while later.
"First I called my coach after I got done playing that I thought it was time and I wanted to do it," Robinson said. "After that I told my mom and my stepdad, my dad and grandma, and just went from there. I called Coach Beilein and told him. He was happy. He was real happy. He was on his way home and was talking to me. He told me he was excited and he was waiting for me to say this. I think he was pretty excited. It made his night."
"The reason I didn't tell anyone else (Monday) night or post it on Facebook was because I wanted to have time to tell the other coaches that had offered me. I wanted to let them know that I had made my decision and be respectful to them. I just wanted to thank them for coming to see me play and progress and everything. I just wanted to let them know before I put it out there to everybody."
Of Robinson's other suitors, five had extended scholarship offers. Even with his growth in performance and stature (from 6-3 ½ to 6-5 ½) commanding attention from other high majors, the talented youngster believed strongly that how he fit at Michigan was too good to pass up.
"He had offers from Valparaiso, Indiana State, IUPUI, Missouri State, and I think Colorado," said Lake Central Coach Dave Milausnic. "There are a number of schools that were making a lot of contact with him, but those were the some of the stronger suitors. But it is not like he was impulsive about (making a commitment). He did his homework. He went (to Michigan) a couple of times. It is not something that he immediately jumped on. He thought about it. Some kids think about it for a year and they want to rack up 30 offers. Glenn thought it was a good fit and was really confident in talking with the players up there. He sat and talked to Zack Novak for half an hour at the football game and Zack Novak is a kid that we played against eight times in four years. So he knows him and Zack had nothing but great things to say. Everything that went on with the football game, Glenn and his family just loved it."
That extreme comfort Robinson & company experienced during their most recent visit was actually the culmination of a recruiting process that began fortuitously last year.
"I think (Coach Meyer) was watching Mitch McGary last year when he happened to see Glenn play," Milausnic recalled. "We played against Chesterton last year and Glenn had a pretty good game. So just by chance (Michigan assistant) Coach (Jeff) Meyer saw him and then began to follow up with him as he progressed through the season and the summer. It is one of those things that they were watching somebody else and happened to see another kid that they liked. They scouted him relentlessly throughout the course of the summer. They were at everything he did this summer along with a few other schools. They really worked their tails off and they showed Glenn was a recruit they really wanted. (The Michigan coaches) are professional and honest. It was obvious that I think they have a fantastic eye for not only what a player is doing now, but also projecting what they can do in three to four years down the line. They just seem very diligent and hard working and just seemed like the right fit for Glenn."
With his recruitment now out of the way and two years of high school still to go, Robinson's focus has shifted completely toward rounding out his burgeoning floor game.
"I started to develop more of my jump shot coming off screens and coming off the ball screen," Robinson reported. "I think during my training I got a little bit stronger and I'm able to finish at the hole pretty well… dunk on people or whatever I have to do to make the basket. My overall game is just improved, from ball-handling, to my shot, to defense… everything. I still need to work more on my outside shot. I know that can get better. It can always get better. Then I just need to keep dribbling as I get taller. On defense, I've got long arms and I play long, so I need to be able to get deflections or rebound and everything."
That sounds like young man emulating the all-around game his father, Glenn "Big Dog" Robinson, brought to the floor when he starred at Purdue and for years in the NBA. While father and son are clearly two totally different players, there are a few similarities.
"Outside the fact they look a lot alike, his dad had a natural little fade away in the mid range that Glenn has as well," said Milausnic. "It's just a little natural lean back, 15-footer. It almost looks like a silhouette of his father. You'll know what I'm talking about it when you see it."
"You'll be like holy cow!"
So too will John Beilein.