Beechwood – and Northern Kentucky – are the big winners in the Antonio Robinson Jr. sweepstakes as the senior transfer from Florida has enrolled with the defending state champion Tigers after earlier reports had him landing at Highlands.
With the new Kentucky law — not to mention the KHSAA ruling following the law’s implementation that a transfer student after July 1 would have to live within his or her new school district — that has now happened.
That the Wake Forest-committed defensive back would immediately become the top prospect in Northern Kentucky is great news for Beechwood. A recent published list of the top college prospects in Greater Cincinnati had none from Northern Kentucky in its top 22 until Robinson moved in and was added to the list.
According to 247sports.com, which still has Robinson listed as playing at “Ft. Thomas Highlands,” the 5-foot-10, 181-pound corner is the top recruit for Wake Forest’s incoming 2023 class, ranked No. 41 in the nation, and the No. 2 prospect in Kentucky behind only Louisville Male’s 6-5, 315-pound defensive lineman William Spencer who is headed to UK. Robinson is the No. 37 corner in the nation, according to 247sports.
As far as his decision to enroll at Beechwood, Robinson and his father, former NFL wide receiver and Super Bowl winner with the Green Bay Packers, Antonio Robinson Sr., had visited with and observed the Beechwood program and obviously liked what they saw, said head coach Noel Rash. But all the details of transferring and moving had to be worked out with the school’s administration.
One important factor is that Robinson, who will also play a number of positions on offense, will qualify for graduation after his fall semester and will be able to become an early college enrollee. That’s what many schools hope their football signees will be able to do so that they can participate in spring practice and have a leg up on playing next fall as freshmen.
Robinson Sr. moved the family to Northern Kentucky for an opportunity to become a coach with his friend, Jordan Nevels, who is opening Nevels Fitness in Newport this fall.
Robinson Jr. played last year at Florida Christian High School in the Miami area. Beechwood will open Saturday, Aug. 20, at Louisville Fairdale, where the back-to-back Kentucky Class 2A state champs will put their 23-game win streak on the line.
Saying goodbye to J.M.
With his announcement on social media that he’d be spending his senior season in Atlanta at The Skill Factory basketball program and prep school, Jacob Meyer bid farewell to the Ninth Region and the Holy Cross program where he’d played for three seasons.
“Thank you Holy Cross for an amazing 3 years. Thank you coach Casey, coach John, & coach Grammar. I also want to thank all of my teammates and anyone who has helped make this possible!!” Jacob tweeted.
The 6-foot-2, 187-pound shooting guard will give up his shot to become the all-time leading Ninth Region scorer, surpassing Scott Draud Jr. for the expected benefit of playing against tougher, more athletic competition.
And as the nation’s leading prep scorer as a junior at 38.2 points a game, Meyer will get a chance to see what’s out there recruiting-wise from a larger college world. He’d already de-committed from Western Kentucky but the programs looking at him will get a chance to see what kind of player they could be signing based on a higher level of competition.
Jacob has offers from Bowling Green, Miami (OH), Northern Kentucky, Western Kentucky, Indiana State, and IUPUI.
If you check out his 2021-22 highlights, as spectacular as Jacob is on so many of them, it’s obvious that he’s often the biggest, fastest, most athletic, and most talented player on the floor. And as hard as Jacob played, he often wasn’t playing against athletes capable of staying with him.
Now he will be after a summer of doing much the same for the Indy Heat team in Nike’s EYBL league, he can show how he scored 81 points in the first two regional tournament games for the Indians.
He’ll be missed in Northern Kentucky – and especially Latonia. And for those who care about such things, would have made a devastating guard combo with Covington Catholic’s all-state point guard Evan Ipsaro in the annual postseason matchup with Indiana. Would have been the first time Kentucky would have had an all-Northern Kentucky starting combo in the series and fun for fans here.
Big numbers for TMU
The numbers are impressive.
A quick look at the Thomas More August football roster reveals a total of 162 players, 119 of them freshmen or redshirt freshmen. A total of 66 players on the Saints squad are from Greater Cincinnati.
Of that number, 28 are from 11 different high schools in Northern Kentucky. All told, the numbers represent seven states in addition to Kentucky and Ohio: Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, Indiana, New Jersey, Maryland, and Alabama. The Saints of new head coach Chris Norwell open the 2022 season at home Aug. 27 against Bluefield (7 p.m.).
Reds honor Conner’s Arlinghaus
Conner’s Brad Arlinghaus and Beechwood’s Kevin Gray were two of the three high school baseball coaches named Greater Cincinnati High School Coaches of the Year in pre-game ceremonies on the field at Great American Ballpark last Friday.
Both coaches had outstanding seasons with the two teams tying for the best records in the Ninth Region at 29-7 with Beechwood winning the Ninth Region title.
Bengals put big bucks into CovCath fieldhouse
We reported last week that the Cincinnati Bengals were a big part of the new Covington Catholic Fieldhouse that will be dedicated Friday at 11 a.m.
What we didn’t know was the extent of the NFL team’s contribution. It’s $167,000 for the workout facility next to CovCath’s Park Hills campus that will be available to youth and community organizations in addition to those of the schools.