Wan’Dale Robinson has three games under his belt as a Nebraska football player.
He’s gone through the traditional tunnel walk twice. He’s been on a road trip to Colorado.
He’s caught passes, returned kicks and carried from the line of scrimmage.
What he hasn’t done yet is score a touchdown.
“Any guy who has the ball in his hands definitely wants to get into the end zone,” Robinson said. “I’m definitely itching to do that.”
There have been several plays already this season where it looked like Robinson was going to break it loose for a touchdown. It just hasn’t happened yet.
“It feels like that to me,” Robinson said. “I just have to do a little bit better job making that last guy miss and then I can do what I do.”
Robinson has eight carries from scrimmage for 30 yards so far. He’s also caught nine passes for 116 yards and returned three kickoffs for 66 yards including a 39-yard return.
“It’s more find the crease and hit it as fast as possible,” Robinson said of returning kickoffs. “If I do that, good things will happen. I’ve always taken pride in kick returns. In high school I didn’t get very many of them. I haven’t gotten very many here yet either.”
At 5-10, 190 pounds, Robinson is a bit bigger than his friend Rondale Moore who set the Big Ten on fire a year ago as a freshman at Purdue. Moore is listed at 5-8 and 180.
Moore is from New Albany, Indiana, which is only an hour from where Robinson grew up in Frankfort, Kentucky.
“Honestly I think he put himself in the best position as a player and for him to get the ball,” Moore said of Robinson at Big Ten Media Days in Chicago. “I’m really excited for him and hope everything works out. I wish he would have come to Purdue, but that’s his decision.”
Robinson has certainly noticed the difference between college football and what he faced in high school.
“It’s definitely different,” he said. “The speed of the game is different. You kind of have to be able to read coverages a little bit more playing teams that want to disguise and play trap and things like that. Whenever teams are pointing you out, that’s something I realized in our last game.
“They were pointing me out wherever I was, so I had to be aware of who was kind of coming at me and who was trying to guard me. Those type of things.”
Opposing defenses have done what they could to throw Robinson off his game and keep the ball out of his hands.
The fast-paced offense the Huskers like to run suits Robinson perfectly.
“That’s a lot better than having to go out and think,” he said. “Whenever you get a signal and you know exactly what you have to do and how to get open it’s a lot better than going out there and trying to figure out what the defense is doing and what I have to do. Just getting out there and playing fast is a lot better than going out there and having to think.”
Robinson has split time between receiver and running back, just like the Nebraska coaches told him he would during the recruiting process. He actually feels more comfortable at running back.
“I’ve actually played more running back in my life than I have receiver,” he said. “Running back is more of my comfort ability, but I feel like I play receiver equally as well.”
Even though Robinson is just three games into his college career, but he said there have been few surprises.
“It’s been everything I expected,” Robinson said. “I expected to play running back and receiver. That’s what they told me I’d be doing. So everything I’ve done I’ve expected to do.”
One thing is for sure — Robinson appreciates the opportunity he’s getting at Nebraska to play college football and get an education at the same time.
“Everybody, especially where I’m from, don’t get to do what I do,” he said. “It’s kind of special for me. I like to do a lot of this for my city. Nobody from my city has been as highly touted, I guess you could say as I have been.
“I just try to have a good representation for my city and everybody back home.”
Now, he just needs to find the end zone for the first time.