HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL PLAYOFFS - Transfer quarterback flying high with War Eagles
Arriving at a new school presented some challenges for Gray Collegiate quarterback Tre Robinson.
The Batesburg-Leesville transfer was not only trying to assimilate into a more pass-oriented offense. He was also succeeding the school’s all-time leading passer in current Clemson freshman Hunter Helms.
Through work and encouragement from Helms and the coaching staff, Robinson has found his comfort zone with the 6-0 War Eagles.
“This is a great program,” Robinson said. “I’ve got great people around me and I felt this was the best opportunity for me to succeed.”
Robinson has accounted for 1,189 total yards (907 passing, 282 rushing) and 17 touchdowns (11 passing, 6 rushing) entering Friday’s Class 2A 1st round game against St. Joseph’s (6-1) at Midlands Sports Complex in West Columbia.
The contest is a rematch of last year’s 2nd round game won by the War Eagles 44-18.
“He’s just done a good job of getting with our quarterbacks coach and really learning our offense from the beginning,” Holmes said. “He spent a lot of the summer just on film, watching our film, going through our playbook, really just trying to grasp at things.
“Tre’s a bright young man. He carries a 4.0 GPA. It’s just kind of getting a better feel for it and you can see that every single week that he’s starting to feel more and more confident in what we’re running and what we’re asking him to do.”
Having a 1,000-yard plus rusher in KZ Adams and experienced wide receivers in Chris Rhone, Nakeem Smith and Devin Johnson and has also helped make Robinson’s transition easier to Gray Collegiate.
“(Adams) takes pressure off me,” Robinson said. “He’s the type of guy that you give him the ball, he’s going to score. When they’re watching him, it gives me more room to run on the options and the reads and stuff like that and opens areas in the passing game that usually wouldn’t be open with other running backs in the backfield.”
Holmes added Robinson’s running ability is another different attribute he brings to the position in comparison with Helms. As the season has progressed, Holmes said Robinson has shown improvement in his reads and decision-making.
Having played a battle-tested scheduled with wins over 4 Top 10 teams (Batesburg-Leesville, Saluda, Newberry, Oceanside Collegiate) has prepared Robinson for post-season competition. Should the War Eagles win Friday, it would face either North Central or Christ Church in the 2nd round leading into a potential road showdown with top-ranked Abbeville in the Upper State final.
“We’ve seen a lot of tough teams along the way and you go to the playoffs, it’s not going to be anything new to you” Robinson said. “We’ve been in dogfights this year, so we know how to handle it.”