Gatorade picks Robinson

CHICAGO — In its 30th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, the Gatorade Co. on Thursday announced Austin Robinson of Middlebury Union High School as its 2014-15 Gatorade Vermont Football Player of the Year. Robinson is the first Gatorade Vermont Football Player of the Year to be chosen from Middlebury Union High School.

The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the field, distinguishes Robinson as Vermont’s best high school football player. Robinson becomes a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Football Player of the Year award to be announced later in December. 

The 6-foot-1, 185-pound senior quarterback and safety led the Tigers to an 11-0 record and their second straight Division I state championship this past season. Robinson passed for 504 yards and 10 touchdowns, completing 32 of 50 passes. A participant in the 2014 North South All-Star Football Classic, he also rushed for 470 yards on 52 carries and another 10 scores. Defensively, he recorded 51 solo tackles and two interceptions for a defense that surrendered just 8.9 points per game.

Robinson, who remains undecided upon a collegiate destination, has maintained a 3.80 GPA in the classroom. He has volunteered locally on behalf of the Lake Dunmore Fern Lake Association, as a member of his school’s nutritional committee and as a youth football and lacrosse referee.

“Austin Robinson is easily the most dynamic player in the state with a very impressive skill set,” said Middlebury Union head coach Dennis Smith. “He has the unique challenge of running a true option offense in which he alone fully dictates who ultimately ends up with the ball. He has the best combination of speed, power, elusiveness and toughness of any player we have coached.”

The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls’ volleyball, boys’ and girls’ cross country, boys’ and girls’ basketball, boys’ and girls’ soccer, baseball, softball, and boys’ and girls’ track and field. It also awards one National Player of the Year in each sport.

The selection process is administered by the Gatorade high school sports leadership team in partnership with USA TODAY High School Sports, which works with sport-specific experts and a media advisory board to determine the state winners in each sport.

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