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Robinson Signs with ETBU

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Multi-Sport Athlete to Play Basketball

By Will Johnson
Messenger Reporter

LOVELADY – It appears East Texas Baptist University (ETBU) in Marshall has established a pipeline of recruits in Houston County. For the second time in less than a week, a student/athlete residing in the oldest county in Texas has signed a National Letter of Intent to take their talents to ETBU.

Last week, Grapeland Sandie Josh Ackley signed to baseball for the Tigers. This week, it was Lovelady Lion Jay Thomas Robinson’s turn, as he signed to play basketball for ETBU.

Once all the pictures had been taken and well wishes had been extended, Robinson sat down with The Messenger to discuss his decision to sign with ETBU.

“It was the environment on campus,” Robinson said. “On my first visit there, everyone was so nice. They would show you where you needed to go and they would say nice things. To me, the chapel stuck out the most there because they are more into God than anything else and that’s why I picked the school.”

During his high school career, Robinson was a stellar athlete in football, basketball, baseball and track. While he won numerous accolades in all, he indicated he was most interested in basketball because it was his “first love.”

Asked if he had been recruited in any other sports, the newest ETBU Tiger said he “… received a couple of e-mails about football, but basketball is what I really like to do.”

He said he was first contacted about ETBU though a family friend, Coach David Graves.

“He has helped us through a lot of this and I can’t thank him enough for it. Then, I started calling the coaches on the phone and we would have a little bit of a conversation and then they (ETBU coaching staff) wanted me to come over there. I developed a relationship first and then we went kind of further into the recruiting process as far as going to visit and then offering,” Robinson said.

Robinson also thanked Lovelady Athletic Director Jon Lowery.

“Coach Lowery has also been a big help. He is a great coach. It’s kind of sad to see him go. He was kind of like a father figure and he helped a lot,” Robinson explained.

Lowery is retiring from the educational field after 30 years of service to both Crockett and Lovelady ISDs.

The hoopster said it took a lot of pressure off of him once he had made his decision but quickly added, “Once I visited there, I knew that was where I should be.”

As far as any advice he would pass along to his underclassmen teammates, Robinson said, “Don’t ever give up. Try as hard as you can and never give up.”

The Lovelady Lion said he planned to study physical therapy once he enrolls at ETBU.

From all of us here at The Messenger Sports, we would like to extend our congratulations and wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors.

Will Johnson may be reached via e-mail at wjohnson@messenger-news.com.