As we continue our march to kickoff, we take a look at the top 100 recruits to sign with Auburn of all-time*. The rankings are based on 247’s composite recruit rankings, which unfortunately only date back to 2000.
We’re into the running back portion of our countdown — Ben Tate yesterday, and another guy tomorrow. However today we’re going with a second chance for one of the most talented (and frustrating) backs in recent memory.
Jovon Robinson originally committed to Auburn as a member of the class of 2013, but high school transcript issues out of Memphis prevented him from stepping foot on the Plains. Instead, Tre Mason became a Heisman finalist that year, and Auburn came within seconds of a national title. Robinson went to junior college, and just two years later he was ready for another shot at Auburn.
His first season at JUCO, he ran for more than 2,300 yards and 34 touchdowns and became the consensus top JUCO player in the country. He was a back that was supposed to bring huge success to the Tigers after the departure of Cameron Artis-Payne the previous year.
Well, that didn’t happen. First of all, Robinson got just 4 carries for 20 yards over the first half of the season. He became the feature back after early-season struggles saw Auburn limp into the Halloween matchup with Ole Miss at just 4-3. During the 27-19 loss to the Rebels, Robinson ran for 91 yards on 18 carries, and he broke out the next week at Texas A&M with a 27-carry, 159-yard performance. He scored his first touchdown in a win over the Aggies (and eventual Heisman winner Kyler Murray), and seemed destined to be the guy down the stretch.
Auburn went just 1-2 in games against Georgia, Idaho, and Alabama to finish the regular season, but Robinson stayed steady, running for 243 yards and a touchdown during that span. He capped the year with a 127-yard day against his hometown Memphis Tigers in the Birmingham Bowl that December, and all indications were that his 2016 year would be something special.
Auburn’s Jovon Robinson dismissed from team for missing classes/meetings & “continued inattention to detail in everything” source told @ESPN— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) August 4, 2016
Gus kicked him off the team. Robinson definitely played a role in an off-campus brawl where teammate Marshall Taylor was beaten unconscious, and maybe the dismissal of Duke Williams was a contributing factor in Gus’ decision to dismiss the tailback. What’s for certain is that Robinson didn’t live up to the standards set by the coaching staff.
He spent the 2016 season with Valdosta State after the dismissal.
Tomorrow we’ll have a much happier running back story to send you into the week.