The cliché image is characterization of a coach is as a father figure to players.
You don’t hear brother-figure too often.
But that was pinned on Gamecocks defensive coordinator Travaris Robinson, and it fits in certain ways. At 35 he’s on the young side for coaches at the power five level. He’s got the energy, intensity and enthusiasm that shows a certain kind of youth.
He’ll still get on players often, and there’s a line he has to manage.
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“I think that some people have, and it’s a skill, to motivate players, to also develop a respect and friendship with players,” Gamecocks coach Will Muschamp said. “But there’s always that line of being a coach and the player. And he has as good of an ability of probably anybody I’ve worked with that can do that and manage that line. And manage the players still understanding when it’s time to lock in and be serious and when it’s time to enjoy a meeting setting or and on-the- field setting or a laugh or two.”
Muschamp has worked with Robinson at Florida, Auburn and now in Columbia.
The former Auburn defensive back played three years on the fringes of the NFL before turning to coaching. His energy, personality and ability to build relationships have made him a well-regarded recruiter.
And Muschamp says that reflects the job he does building bonds with his players.
“That’s why he has such a close relationship with his players,” Muschamp said. “Because players see him making a difference for them as players, as people, but he’s also able to do it in a father-like, brother-like way. That’s hard to do, and it’s hard to have that personality to handle those situations.”
But while he’s got the background as a safety and still looks spry enough to possibly play, Muschamp said with a grin, rest assured that’s not the case.
“Thank goodness T-Rob’s not playing for us,” Muschamp said. “You ought to see him move on the practice field, it’s embarrassing.”