Penn State hasn't exactly been "Wide Receiver U." of late, having had just four players at the position drafted since 1998. Nittany Lions junior Allen Robinson is out to change that.
Robinson is the best receiver in the Big Ten and one of the six or seven best nationally. He has 38 receptions for 621 yards (16.4 yards per catch) and five TDs, and his average of 124.2 yards per game ranks first in the Big Ten and seventh nationally. Since the beginning of the 2012 season, Robinson has 115 receptions for 1,639 yards (14.3 yards per catch) and 16 TDs. His touchdown total is tied for second nationally in that span, behind only Fresno State's Davante Adams' 21.
Robinson, who is from the Detroit area, has excellent size (6-foot-3, 215 pounds), good speed (4.5 in the 40) and strong hands. He can get deep, too, as he had 15 receptions covering at least 30 yards and 11 covering at least 40 since the beginning of the 2012 season.
Robinson has shown versatility this season, too. Nittany Lions coach Bill O'Brien, whose previous job was offensive coordinator of the New England Patriots, told reporters this week that in order to get favorable matchups, Robinson has lined up in five different spots this season, including the backfield.
"He's done a lot of really good things; it started in the offseason," O'Brien told reporters. "He really worked extremely hard on his own game, getting stronger, getting faster, getting quicker."
Robinson has his toughest individual test to date Saturday when he goes against Michigan third-year sophomore cornerback Blake Countess (5-10, 182). Countess missed all but one game in 2012 with a torn ACL, but he has rebounded nicely and is tied for the national lead with four interceptions.