© Greg Powers

Delano Robinson commits to SMU

Denton (Texas) Ryan linebacker Delano Robinson committed to SMU during a visit on Friday, one of three commitments on the day for the Mustangs.

Heading into a Friday unofficial to SMU, 2017 Denton (Texas) Ryan linebacker Delano Robinson had a feeling he’d commit. He liked the idea of being part of a rebuild. 

“I like that because I don’t like stuff to be given to me,” Robinson said. “I like to work for things. If we can work to build something bigger and better, that’s what I like. To be the face of a change for a program.”

When he arrived on campus, the warm, family-like atmosphere sealed it and made him commit. 

“When I first got there, I was very welcomed by the staff. They were really excited to have me and they felt like another family for me, despite my real family,” Robinson said. “What really impressed me is how excited they were to see me there. They were all very excited, caring, respectful, and just very helping.”

Robinson visited the same day as Dallas Bishop Dunne linebacker Shaine Hailey and Bay City (Texas) defensive lineman Jordan Gipson, but most of his visit was just he and his family. He toured the campus, met with the coaches and met with the athletic tutors. Coming into the visit, Robinson’s main focus was the educational aspect of SMU.

“Despite football, grades are a big priority there,” Robinson said. “They were telling me how the team beat their record for the highest (team) GPA in their school’s history. That’s proving to me that they really care about the grades and care how a student improves off the field, not just on the field.”

Robinson’s mother attended with him, and her primary focus was on the education as well.

“She doesn’t really care about the football, she just cares about how good of an education I’m going to get,” Robinson said. “When she heard that, she was very thrilled excited. 

The 6-foot, 190-pound Robinson is the third Ryan Raider to commit to SMU in the last two recruiting classes, joining defensive linemen Ken McLaurin and J.T. Williams. McLaurin and Robinson are close friends. The two hoped for a long time they would get a chance to play together in college. 

“Before I have even got the SMU offer, my sophomore year, we sat down after a game and were like, ‘Could we play together?’” Robinson said. “He was thinking, ‘yes, I want my little brother to play for me’ because he refers to me as his little brother on the field and at school. So I was thinking, ‘maybe we could play together.’ So when I got this SMU offer, I was thinking that things are happening like we want them to. He was very excited to see that I committed and that he’ll get to spend more years with me playing.”

Robinson picked SMU over offers from Air Force, UTSA, Bucknell and Stephen F. Austin. A linebacker and strong safety at Ryan, he will play the star linebacker position at SMU, which is a hybrid linebacker/safety spot.

Gipson and Hailey also committed on their visits. The trio of commitments brings SMU’s total to 12, with eight of them defensive players. SMU’s 12 commitments is the highest number for any AAC team. 

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