Rashard Robinson is so close to playing football again.
Eighteen months after the last time he stepped onto the football field at LSU, Robinson could find out where his NFL home will be when the NFL draft resumes with the second and third rounds Friday night.
After spending the past four months on the draft trail, Robinson is ready for his long journey to the league to be over.
“It messes with your head a little bit, just from going through the whole process, taking all the visits with the teams, doing the workouts,” Robinson said. “It’s tough.”
Robinson, who made an instant contribution to LSU as a freshman in 2013 and started eight games in 2014, has the kind of length and ability teams covet at cornerback.
And he has drawn plenty of interest in the past four months. Robinson took official predraft visits to the New York Jets, New York Giants, Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks and went through private workouts for the Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins.
“Everybody wants to know about what all happened at LSU,” Robinson said. “That’s the first thing they want to know, and then just what I can bring to the table.”
If things at LSU had gone differently, Robinson might have come off the board in Thursday night’s first round. But at the start of his sophomore season, Robinson was suspended for failing a drug test and, right before LSU’s annual showdown with Alabama, he was suspended indefinitely for failing to meet the necessary academic standards needed to play.
Robinson never got back on the team.
“It was a maturity thing,” he said. “When I came in, my mind wasn’t right. I got too complacent, just got comfortable and one thing led to another. After leaving LSU and everything, I had to mature in a lot of ways.”
After missing a semester, he re-enrolled at LSU with the intent of getting his grades high enough to play, but he was arrested for unauthorized entry into the apartment of former LSU quarterback Anthony Jennings.
“It was a bigger blow to him not to re-enroll,” said his sister, G’ana, in a February interview. “That really took a toll on him.”
Robinson moved back to Florida and enrolled at Broward College with the intent to play football, but he didn’t have enough credits. Without an opportunity to play, Robinson decided to stay in class and start training for the draft. G’ana said Robinson got all A’s and B’s in his classes at Broward.
Robinson doesn’t like to talk about the end of his time at LSU in detail, cutting short a pre-draft interview with The Advocate. He would rather focus on the future.
A future that will have clarity by the end of the weekend — potentially by the end of Friday night.