TAHLEQUAH, Okla. -- Northeastern State named Rob Robinson as the 19th head coach in program history, it was announced Thursday by director of athletics Tony Duckworth.
Robinson has spent the past 12 years under Craig Schurig as a member of the Washburn Ichabod coaching staff, serving as the offensive coordinator for the past four seasons. He also directed the running backs for the past seven years and coached the wide receivers for the five years prior to that. He served as the recruiting coordinator from 2002-10 and was the academic coordinator from 2010-13.
"Rob Robinson was on my short list from the beginning, and once I began having conversations with him it was clear he met the characteristics I sought in our next head football coach," Duckworth said. "Coach Robinson is a great addition to the NSU family, and he will be an outstanding leader of our football program. I am thrilled Rob, Jes and their children will wear green and white."
"I am very excited for the opportunity to take over a program at a great university," Robinson said. "I didn't want to be a head coach just to be a head coach. I wanted to be at a place that has a chance to be successful, and Northeastern State has everything it needs to build a quality program."
Robinson has been an integral member of a Washburn staff that has turned around the Ichabod program during the past decade. Washburn averaged 3.3 wins from 1989-03 and had just one winning season, but the Ichabods have averaged 7.9 wins from 2004-13 and have posted 10 consecutive winning campaigns.
Washburn has competed in the NCAA Division II playoffs three times in the past nine years (2005, '07, '11) and captured the first MIAA championship in school history in 2005. The Ichabods also won the 2004 Mineral Water Bowl and the 2010 Kanza Bowl.
In Robinson's first season as offensive coordinator, he led Washburn to 10th in the nation in scoring offense (37.2 ppg) and 10th nationally in total offense (460.3 ypg). Washburn ranked fifth in the nation in total offense (481.5 ypg) and 11th in scoring offense (38.6 ppg) in 2011, and the Ichabods were once again 11th in the country in scoring offense (40.9 ppg) in 2013.
The 2011 campaign was arguably the best in school history, as WU won a school-record 10 games and lost just three. One of those victories included a 52-49 triumph against Abilene Christian in the first round of the NCAA Division II Football Championship, marking the first playoff win in school history.
Robinson is the second former coordinator under Schurig's tutelage to become the head coach of another program, joining Fort Hays State's Chris Brown.
Robinson spent the 2001 season at Pittsburg State as a graduate assistant, coaching the defensive backs with Ichabod head coach Craig Schurig. The Gorillas won the MIAA championship that year.
"I have coached in the MIAA for 13 years now, and I think that experience has helped give me a great perspective of how to build a successful program at this level," Robinson said. "You must have the right model to be successful in this league. You have to recruit the right kind of players and you must have the right kind of coaches that can figure out what the other coordinators in this league are doing. This conference, from top to bottom, is one of the sharpest that you're going to play against in terms of collective football minds. We can't just get better athletes; we're also going to have to do our due diligence in scouting each and every week to put together game plans that can slow down what the other teams are going to try to do against us."
Robinson received a bachelor of art degree in history from William Jewell in 2000. He was a four-year letterman and three-year starter for the Cardinals at fullback.