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Texas Tech Coaching Profiles :: Defensive Backs Coach, Travaris Robinson

Travaris Robinson

Title: Defensive Backs Coach
Age: 29
Birthplace: Miami, FL
Undergraduate Degree: Communications, Auburn University
Graduate Degree: N/A

Life Before Coaching: Robinson began his playing career at Coral Park, Miami, Florida, and played for Tommy Tuberville at Auburn from 1999 through 2002. By the time that Robinson was a senior, Robinson was a team captain, led his team to a 9-4 record, had 92 tackles, 4 interceptions and 3 pass break-ups. Robinson went undrafted, but ended up playing with two NFL teams, the Atlanta Falcons and the Tampa Bay Bucaneers, for the 2003 season. It's tough to find what Robinson did from 2004 through 2006, but for the 2006 season, Robinson joined the Auburn coaching staff as a student assistant to finish his undergraduate degree.

Prior Coaching Stops: In trying to piece together Robinson's coaching stops, as noted above, he started off where he started, at Auburn, as a student assistant and then as a graduate assistant in 2007. In 2008, Robinson became the secondary coach for Western Kentucky, moved on to Southern Mississippi in 2009, again, as the secondary coach, and then was hired by Tuberville. Just in case you were curious, the Southern Mississippi pass defense was average, at best. The Golden eagles were 65th in pass efficiency defense and 109th in pass defense.

More on Robinson, after the jump.

Arrival at Texas Tech: The first mention of Robinson was in an article near the February signing day that more than mentioned the fact that Robinson's presence in the Florida was a big part of why he was hired ad Texas Tech:

Tuberville said he wants the majority of Tech’s signing classes to be Texas players, but Wednesday probably won’t be the last time the Red Raiders sign four players from Florida. Defensive backs coach Travaris Robinson is a Miami native, and Tuberville is well connected there from his eight years as an assistant at the University of Miami and his 14 years as a head coach in the Southeastern Conference.

Tuberville believes far more players get overlooked in Florida than in Texas.


Tuberville said more good athletes in Florida wind up not playing football until their junior or senior year.

"That’s the reason you have a few more guys in that area that might be unknown," he said. "The evaluation process is just so hard down there. But we will spend the time with the coaches in that area to be able to find the diamonds in the rough, so to speak."

Robinson's next mention was when CB Will Ford was switched from safety to cornerback and the decision was easy for Ford:

Texas Tech’s new defensive backs coach, Travaris Robinson, hadn’t been on the job very long when he made Will Ford an offer Ford couldn’t refuse. Inheriting a secondary that returns all but one starter, Robinson offered Ford the chance to compete for the vacancy.

Initially, what flashed through Ford’s mind was that he was recruited to Tech to play safety, not cornerback.

"He was like, ‘Do you want to stay on the sideline or do you want to play?’" Ford said. "I told him, ‘Coach, I want to play.’"

During spring practice, Robinson was concerned about depth in the secondary because of all of the personnel that he intends on shuffling in and out of the game and may be looking to freshmen to fill some gaps:

"That’s one area we have to improve in, because we run so many different personnel,’’ Robinson said. "Right now, number-wise, we don’t have what we’re looking for. Hopefully, those (incoming freshmen) will be able to help us immediately and we’ll be fine, but right now we have a lot of guys that’s able to play a lot of different positions.’’

And both Robinson and defensive coordinator James Willis are enthusiastic on the practice field and Robinson wants players to get used to playing with pressure:

Willis and defensive backs coach Travaris Robinson both played at Auburn, where new Red Raiders head coach Tommy Tuberville was in charge for 10 years. Robinson, whose energy level matches that of Willis’, said the calendar might say it’s spring but coaches want workouts to feel like fall for the players.

"Like I tell them all the time: We’re going to create the pressure of game day,’’ Robinson said, "when it’s 80,000 people in the stands and we’re on the road and no one likes us and they’re talking bad about us. Can you play when your back is against the wall? That’s what we’re trying to get these kids to do now — play with their backs against the wall."

Previous Coaching Profiles:

Defensive Coordinator, James Willis
Running Backs Coach, Chad Scott
Defensive Line Coach, Sam McElroy
Offensive Coordinator, Neal Brown
Defensive Ends and Linebackers Coach, Robert Prunty