Pitt starting point guard James Robinson will play in his last home game on Sunday in front of the Oakland Zoo and other fans in attendance at the Petersen Events Center against visiting ACC foe Duke. He will be recognized at the game during the team’s annual senior day festivities along with graduate transfers Rafael Maia, Sterling Smith, and Alonzo Nelson-Ododa. Robinson arrived at Pitt from storied program DeMatha Catholic in Maryland as a highly-touted freshman four years ago.
“It was definitely a fast four years. It was a really good four years for me,” Robinson said. “I’m definitely going to enjoy (senior day) a lot.”
As a true freshman four years ago, he was expected to provide back-up help at the point guard spot right away behind then-starter Tray Woodall. However, he cracked the starting lineup at shooting guard due to his skills on the court and has been in the starting lineup ever since.
“Tray and I were out there a lot together. I had a chance to learn on the fly from him. He had a really good career here. As soon as I got on campus, he taught me the ins and outs of the college game,” Robinson said. “I learned a lot being around him on a day to day basis. The effect he had on me, hopefully I had the same effect on the younger guys.”
Robinson became the forty-fifth player in Pitt history to surpass 1,000 points when he scored nine points at North Carolina on Feb. 14 this year. He is one of only five Panthers ever to score 1,000 points, 500 assists, 350 rebounds, and 50 steals.
More-importantly, he recently became the all-time leader at Pitt in number of starts with 130 with a chance to increase that amount by at least four games and maybe more depending on what happens in the post-season.
“[All-time leader in starts] is a pretty cool stat. I didn’t know that. It definitely means a lot to me. I’m proud to say that,” Robinson said. ” I know there’s been a lot of good players come through here.”
Robinson also has registered 10 or more assists with no turnovers in three games during his career, a feat only accomplished only eight times in Pitt history. He is the current NCAA leader in career assist-to-turnover ratio. He is also the first Pitt player in history to earn two international gold medals while playing on the USA Basketball teams.
Pitt head coach Jamie Dixon credited Robinson for his skills and knowledge on the basketball court.
“James [Robinson] has had a great career. You have to be tough to come back from injuries and fatigue,” Dixon said. “He has an attention to detail and he’s unselfish. He has a willingness to sacrifice for assists-to-turnovers. He leads by example and thinks team first.”
Robinson is looking forward to playing Duke on Sunday and also the senior night festivities.
“It’s senior night. My family will be here. That will be enjoyable for them,” Robinson said. “Before the game, I’ll enjoy the ceremony but I’ll realize when it’s time to play the game.”
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