April 24, 2004
Columbia, SC – Saturday was a big day for former University of South Carolina cornerback Dunta Robinson, as the Houston Texans selected him #10 overall in the 2004 NFL draft. Robinson becomes the highest Gamecock drafted since Sterling Sharpe was the #7 pick of the 1988 draft by the Green Bay Packers.
Robinson, a 6-0, 186-pounder from Athens, Ga., was regarded as one of the top two cornerbacks available in this year’s draft. Virginia Tech’s DeAngelo Hall was the #8 pick by the Atlanta Falcons and was the first cornerback chosen. ESPN’s draft analysts were all pleased with the Texans’ selection.
“I had Dunta Robinson as one of my top two cornerbacks all along,” said Mel Kiper, Jr. “He is a great cover guy and really plays the run well. The Texans did themselves a favor by selecting this young man.”
Michael Irvin agreed. “I like guys who not only break up passes, but who can intercept them and take them back for touchdowns,” said the former Dallas Cowboy great. “Dunta Robinson looks to be that type of corner.”
Robinson was team captain of the 2003 Gamecocks and recorded 114 tackles during his career with five interceptions. He returned an interception for a touchdown last season against UAB. One of the most personable and likeable players to wear the Garnet and Black, Robinson was in Columbia last weekend for the Spring Game and was obviously looking forward to draft day.
“I’m anxious about the draft, no doubt about that,” he said last week. “I’ve prepared hard for this and I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to be a high draft pick. I can’t wait to see what happens.”
Robinson becomes the seventh Gamecock to be taken in the first round of the NFL draft. Previous first round selections include: Rick Sanford (#25 by the New England Patriots in 1979); George Rogers (#1 by the New Orleans Saints in 1981); Willie Scott (#14 by the Kansas City Chiefs in 1981); Sterling Sharpe (#7 by the Green Bay Packers in 1988); Ernest Dye (#18 by the Arizona Cardinals in 1993); and John Abraham (#13 by the New York Jets in 2000).
Robinson was expected to be in Athens on Saturday to watch the draft with his family. Gamecock fans can be proud of this former Carolina student-athlete. USCsports.com hopes to have a one-on-one interview with Robinson in the near future.
On behalf of the South Carolina Gamecocks, congratulations to Dunta Robinson!