Melvin Robinson, an All-Met wide receiver, transferring to Gwynn Park from Annandale

By Preston Williams
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, July 2, 2010

All-Met wide receiver Melvin Robinson is transferring from Annandale to Gwynn Park, where he intends to play both offense and in the secondary, perhaps even quarterback.

Robinson, who in recent years had been living with cousins in Annandale after moving from Southeast Washington, will reside with his father, Melvin Waddy, and play for the Yellow Jackets, who finished 11-1 last season.

"I think it's a good move," Robinson said. "Once I get to know everybody, I think I'll fit right in. I just hope I accomplish what I'm aiming for," he added, citing a state title.

Gwynn Park has reached the playoffs nine of the past 10 seasons and won the Maryland 3A championship during an unbeaten 2005 season. Annandale (4-6) has not won a playoff game since 1994.

The 6-foot-3, 210-pound Robinson, who has a scholarship offer from West Virginia, caught 41 passes for 678 yards and seven touchdowns last season, statistics that lagged behind more prolific receivers in the area.

"They couldn't get him the ball this past season," Waddy said. "I know it will be the same way if not worse. So we're just not going to take that chance."

Robinson said that the Annandale coaches would not allow him to play defense for fear of injury but that he would like to play both ways. The Atoms have undergone a coaching change, with Dick Adams retiring in January after 20 seasons and being replaced by assistant Mike Scott. Scott could not be reached for comment. Robinson said that WVU is his only scholarship offer so far but that he has narrowed his list of potential colleges to Maryland, Penn State, Virginia Tech, Miami and Hawaii.

Waddy and Gwynn Park Coach Danny Hayes formerly played semi-pro football together, and Waddy's brother, Robert Crawford, is involved in the Gwynn Park program as what Hayes described as a "mentoring" role.

"He's learned a lot [at Annandale], but Melvin needs to be taught," Waddy said. "This is his last year. It's crucial for him. I just want Melvin to be well-rounded when it's time for him to go to the next level. We appreciate everything [Annandale] did for us, and I think they appreciate everything Melvin has done for them at the school. So I guess it's about even."

Gwynn Park returns quarterback Zachary Jefferson, who was the projected starter last season before he got hurt in the opener against Forestville, Hayes said. Jefferson led Gwynn Park to a seven-on-seven passing league title last summer.

"He can definitely get [Robinson] the ball," Hayes said, adding that Robinson will join a deep receiving corps that includes two other seniors with similar size -- Najee Green and Andrew Boseman -- as well as smaller speedster Brandon Banks, a junior.

"With [Robinson] added to the mix, I think the ball will be floating around a little bit," Hayes said. "If he's an All-Met player, the bottom line is we can definitely use him, at receiver, safety and quarterback. I'm pretty sure he'll be a huge plus."

Robinson is the second first-team Northern Region receiver to switch schools since last season. Matt Zanellato transferred from Robinson to Virginia AAA Division 6 runner-up Lake Braddock.

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