For the second time in 18 months, TCU Football finds itself defending its program against alleged mistreatment, this time at the hands of former quarterback Shawn Robinson.
Robinson left the Horned Frogs before the conclusion of last season in what was rumored to be contentious fashion. The sophomore signal-caller had an up and down year for TCU to say the least, struggling with turnover issues behind an inconsistent offensive line as he played through multiple bumps and bruises. Robinson was eventually shut down for the year after the Oklahoma game, when it was determined that he was doing more harm than good trying to play through the pain. In his article on this breaking news, Drew Davison recounted the following quote from Patterson from his mid-week press conference following that loss: “He’s tried to play and I think it’s hurt his confidence and it’s hurt his escapability and a lot of other things for him to make some plays, how we run the read option and everything. “It just came to the point in time for the betterment of him, he needed to go ahead and get things taken care of.” He finished the season having completed 61 percent of his passes for 1,326 yards with nine touchdowns and eight ints. He added another 230 yards and three touchdowns on the ground.
By most accounts, it appeared to be Robinson’s choice to try and gut it out, and he was praised (initially) for being a tough guy and a team player. But as the turnovers and losses mounted, fans grew frustrated and (unfairly) turned against the young QB. Now, Robinson is apparently alleging that he played against his wishes and is following the suit - quite literally - of former wide receiver Kolby Listenbee, who recently settled his case against Horned Frog Football for an undisclosed sum (though TCU representatives continue to deny wrong-doing).
Though the specifics of the claims are unknown at this time, TCU is contesting their basis - though it is being said that they will not contest a waiver being granted. With waivers being granted to Justin Fields at Ohio State (who claimed he did not feel safe after having racially-charged insults hurled at him from a then-Georgia baseball player) and Tate Martell for… being Tate Martell(?) at Miami, there is certainly precedent to allow Robinson to play right away. Accusing TCU of mistreatment is a serious charge though, and has reactions far more damning that whether or not he plays this year.
Robison is one of two transfer QBs on the Tigers’ roster, expected to back up Clemson graduated transfer Kelly Bryant in 2019. He could play in up to four games and maintain his redshirt eligibility though if granted this release.
Meanwhile, Gary Patterson’s program finds itself once again embroiled in negative publicity and having to work to ensure that these latest accusations don’t undo years of positive reviews from scores of players that have come through it. If these allegations are indeed proven true, then they need to be addressed and corrected; if they are not, then Robinson should absolutely lose his appeal.
It remains to be seen how this will all play out, and to this point, TCU isn’t speaking up on the issue.