But it wouldn’t be as big as Robinson making an NFL roster, which is what he says he wants to do.
“It’s a big-time dream. Something I’ve always wanted to do, play both sports at the highest level. We’ll see if I can be the first one to really do it,” Robinson told ESPN’s Kevin Pelton, which is a slight exaggeration: Legendary Minnesota Vikings Coach Bud Grant was the first and only person to play in both the NBA and NFL, spending two seasons with the Minneapolis Lakers before dropping basketball to play for the Philadelphia Eagles in the 1940s and ’50s.
Robinson originally went to the University of Washington on a football scholarship and made six starts at cornerback as a freshman in 2002, but he quit to focus on basketball after Coach Rick Neuheisel was fired. He hasn’t played the game competitively since then and says he hasn’t even really begun to train for what would be an absurdly improbable comeback. That will have to wait until Hapoel Tel Aviv’s season ends in June.
“I need to get a little stronger, a little faster,” he told Pelton. “Lifting weights and watching a lot of film. Work on my feet and my hands and how to press [as a cornerback]. Basic stuff. I catch on pretty fast. Just learn some of the drills they’d have me do and start practicing and get ready for it.”
Robinson says he’s talked to a couple of NFL scouts about working out with a few teams, including the Seahawks and Patriots. As for why he’s on this quixotic question, it all comes down to the haters. It always comes down to the haters.
“The biggest challenge is probably all the haters, everybody counting me out, somebody not really giving me the opportunity,” he said. “That’s what I think the biggest challenge will be, getting somebody to give me that chance. If somebody gives me that chance, I know they’ll fall in love with the fierce competitor that I am because I catch on quick. Once I do that, then the sky’s the limit. I don’t know. It seems like they wouldn’t want me to be the first one to do something like this. That’s a huge challenge.”