- Jared Shanker, ESPN Staff Writer
Since last week, a handful of schools have contacted three-star safety Neiko Robinson (Bratt, Fla./Northview) and told him how he is a great fit for their program. The way Robinson sees it, his best fit is still Penn State, despite the NCAA coming down hard on the Nittany Lions program.
Purdue offered Robinson shortly after the sanctions were handed down, and a few other programs also reached out to him. Robinson listened but only out of respect to the coaches.
“(Purdue) was telling me about their program, the history and all that, telling me I can be a great fit there,” Robinson said. “I can be a great fit at Penn State. That’s the way I look at it. Penn State was the first school to show interest, so that’s what I’m going to stick with.”
Robinson said he is 100 percent committed to the Lions “as of right now,” but that does not mean he is actively looking around. It is just in case anything more happens to the program. He could not think of anything specific that would cause him to reconsider, though.
“Honestly, I couldn’t give you one. I don’t know what could happen,” he said. “I think Penn State is a great fit for me. I really do.”
Like many of Penn State commitments and current players, Robinson disagrees with the NCAA’s involvement, but he is not scared off by the punishment. He does not look at it as a knockout punch.
“I evaluate things before I make a judgment. It really ain’t that bad, as bad as people are saying,” Robinson said. “People said they got the death penalty, but, no, they didn’t. They got scholarships taken away, didn’t get bowl games. We’re still going to play on TV, still play a full schedule.”
This past Saturday, six Penn State commitments, including Christian Hackenberg and Adam Breneman, visited State College and reaffirmed their commitments. Robinson said that is an encouraging sign to him and for the program.
“That gives me more reason to stay, because they look at it the same,” Robinson said. “We’re all on the same page, and we don’t even know each other like that.”
The Nittany Lions lost commitment Ross Douglas the day the punishment was handed down, but since then eight verbal pledges told the staff they will remain with Penn State. Another, Zayd Issah, will make a decision after visiting this weekend.