Nick Robinson took the reins of Southern Utah’s men’s basketball program on March 29, 2012, becoming the eighth head men’s basketball coach in the school’s four-year history.
During his first season at SUU Coach Robinson helped usher the Thunderbirds into the Big Sky era, coaching the team to a sixth place finish and a playoff berth in its first season in the conference. Last year the Thunderbirds finished the season ranked among the nation’s top 100 teams in blocked shots (30th with 5.0 per game), free throw percentage (73rd, .724) and rebounding margin (88th, plus-3.0) and also became the first Big Sky team to win its first three league games in its first season in the conference since Boise State turned the trick back in 1970-71.
Two of Robinson’s players, Jackson Stevenett and Damon Heuir, earned all-Big Sky honors in 2012-13 after ranking second and third in the conference in scoring, with Stevenett also ranking 67th in the nation in scoring (17.6 ppg) and 27th in free throw percentage (.867). A third Thunderbird, Jayson Cheesman, finished the season 62nd in the NCAA with 1.94 blocks per game and his 60 last year are the second-most in a season at SUU. The team also excelled in the classroom as the Thunderbirds earned a spot on the NABC’s Academic Excellence Team and placed four individuals on the NABC Honors Court based on their academic accomplishments.
A 2005 graduate of Stanford University, Robinson came to SUU from Louisiana State University, where he spent three seasons on the staff. Prior to his time at LSU Robinson served a season on the staff at William Jewell College and two seasons as an assistant coach at Stanford.
During his time as an assistant coach, Robinson helped guide his teams to a combined record of 87-47 and four post-season appearances, including two NCAA, one NIT and one NAIA Division I national tournaments.
At LSU Robinson served as assistant coach, director of basketball operations and as executive assistant to the head coach on Coach Trent Johnson’s staff, acting one season in each capacity. Robinson’s coaching responsibilities included working with player development, on-the-floor coaching, recruiting, game preparation and opponent scouting.
As a member of Coach Larry Holley’s staff at William Jewell in 2008-09, Robinson helped the Cardinals to a 23-11 record and an appearance in the NAIA national tournament while working with all aspects of the program.
Prior to joining the staff at William Jewell, Robinson was an assistant under Johnson at Stanford from 2006 to 2008, where he worked with recruiting, opponent scouting, game-preparation and player development while also working as a position coach with the Cardinal forwards.
At Stanford, Robinson helped coach the team to NCAA tournament berths in both 2007 and 2008, including a Sweet 16 appearance in 2008 when the team finished second in the Pac-10 at 13-5 with a 28-8 overall mark.
He also helped mentor current and future NBA players Brook Lopez, Robin Lopez and Landry Fields at Stanford, and Justin Hamilton at LSU.
Coach Robinson also spent one season as a volunteer assistant in the prep ranks, under Coach Brian Smith at Albuquerque, N.M.-area Rio Rancho High School, in 2005-06.
As a player at Stanford, Robinson helped the team to a 92-34 overall record and four NCAA tournament appearances, including the 2003-04 season when the Cardinal earned a No. 1 national ranking and a Pac-10 championship.
During the 2003-04 season, Robinson’s game-winning shot against Arizona was nominated for an ESPN ESPY Best Moment. The play included him helping to steal the ball, taking two dribbles across half-court and firing home a 35-footer as time expired to defeat the Wildcats.
Robinson started 67 of the 110 games in which he appeared under Johnson (2004-05) and coach Mike Montgomery (2001-04) at Stanford. His teammates named him the Cardinal’s best defensive player three times and he served as a team captain during his junior and senior seasons.
He was a three-time recipient of the men’s basketball program’s Howie Dallmar Coaches award, presented annually to a Stanford student-athlete who displays excellence on and off the court. He also earned a spot on the Capital One University Division Academic All-District VIII team his senior year and was a three-time academic all-Pac-10 selection.
A native of Liberty, Mo., Coach Robinson holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s degree in sociology from Stanford.
He and his wife, Meagan, are the parents of four children, Annie, Tate, Toby and Elsie Jane.