When Errol Robinson stepped on campus at Mississippi in the fall, he was entrenched in a battle for the starting shortstop position. The speedy freshman played well enough to earn the job in the middle of the infield, and he has started 56 of 57 games this season.
Friday, he will play in his first NCAA regional against No. 4 seed Jacksonville State in the Oxford Regional with the top-seeded Rebels at 8 p.m. Earlier this week, he made the Southeastern Conference all-freshman team after hitting .315 on the year with 21 runs scored and 16 RBI.
Robinson was the first true freshman to start at shortstop on opening day for the Rebels since 2005.
“It’s a blessing being on the all-freshman team, it’s pretty cool,” Robinson said. “I’m really excited about the tournament. We’re focused on what we are doing in the future. I’m focused on getting the job done.”
As a senior at St. John’s, Robinson earned honorable mention All-Met honors after hitting .405 with 38 RBI and a .990 fielding percentage. Robinson spent his first two years at Northwest High School in Germantown before transferring to the Northwest private school.
Robinson said he has had to adjust to the speed level of the SEC and the bigger crowds after a tough fall stretch. He spent a ton of hours working with hitting coach Cliff Godwin, and has matured as a hitter this spring.
Defensively, he has posted a team-high 161 assists and a fielding percentage of .933. In high school, Perfect Game recognized him for having plus range at short and faster speed in games than in actual testing drills.
“It’s always a battle in the conference, especially with the all-American caliber players in front of me,” Robinson said. “It’s not really pressure on me, but I still get a little nervous. The guys in front of me helped me get through it.”
He takes the field in his first NCAA tournament action when the No. 12 Rebels host a regional for the first time since 2004.
“We want to start off and win this regional and hopefully host,” a super regional. Robinson said. “We have to do the little things with making plays and pitches. We have to put our entire game together.”