Athlete of the Month

Senior Jessica Robinson, who was invited to play for the University of Michigan as a sophomore, recently committed to the university and will play for its volleyball team while studying there next year

February 19, 2019


Jack Stromberg

Senior Jessica Robinson in a moment of triumph at a game.

Q: What do you love about volleyball?

I like the fact that anyone can play. You don’t have to be tall or short or fast. You just have to work hard and be dedicated. That’s what I love. I could play with all my friends.


Q: Favorite thing about the sport?

I like how passionate people can get about it. It’s a mental sport, so if you’re having a bad day, you can just pull yourself out of it with your teammates helping you and [by] believing in yourself. I like the fact that there’s so much passion, energy and psyche behind it.


Q: Favorite thing about practice?

My favorite [part of] practice is probably when we’re allowed to make up our own drills, or when we’re allowed to run drills by ourselves. It’s just the players, the coaches don’t have any hand in it, and the captains are in charge and everyone’s just having fun and working hard.


Q: Favorite drill?

We have one drill called “Bingo-Bango-Bongo,” and it’s a lot of running around and having fun and really fast-paced volleyball.


Q: How do you feel about how far the team has come this season?

I’m really proud because it was our goal to reach districts, and we achieved it. I’m really proud of our entire team, because all the the teams out there, they really wanted to beat us, and we held our ground and made sure we never lost.


Q: This season compared to previous seasons?

In past seasons, we were just a team, but this season, we were like a family, and we’re all good friends. We still hang out and text, so I think this year the team really became like a sisterhood. [This] was probably the [most fun] season I’ve had so far.


Q: What do you do together as a team, outside of practice and games?

We have pasta parties and we go out to movies all the time. We had a Friendsgiving and we have pool parties.


Q: What do you love about your teammates?

I love that we’re all so close. We tell each other everything, and we always pick each other up. If someone’s down, we all work together—we gather around them and make them feel better, and we pick them up and tell them they’re OK. I like that, because some other teams will just let you stay down in your funk, but we think it’s a really big team sport, so we help each other up all the time.


Q: Any superstitions/lucky items?

Our entire team bought red scrunchies this year. That was really fun. I have a saying on my shoe, around my shoelace—“You don’t get what you wish for. You get what you work for.” It’s been there since eighth grade.


Q: Favorite memories from volleyball?

Going to China Chef before almost every game with the team. It was so much fun and it felt like a family meal and the food was amazing.


Q: What do you think you’ll miss about being on the team?

Putting tattoos on before every game (My Little Pony, Minions, Cars, smiley faces). It was just so funny crowding into the bathroom and sticking tattoos all over our bodies. [I’ll also miss] sing-a-longs on the bus [and] beating Adams because that game was so intense.


Q: Do you plan to continue volleyball after college?

No, I don’t think so. By then, it’ll have been more than 10+ years of volleyball. I think I’ll be tired of volleyball by then.


Q: Message to younger athletes thinking of committing to a college?

I’d definitely for sure say stay focused. You can’t lose track of your goals.


Q: Besides volleyball, what else do you enjoy doing?

[Watching] superhero movies and comics [and] YouTube, [and] spending time with friends.


Q: Favorite subject?

Debate, for sure. That class changed my life. I love public-speaking now and writing speeches. I think that’s definitely something I want to go into more.


Q: What are your plans for the University of Michigan?

I think I’m going to study public policy, which is a lot like debate.


Q: How do you feel about committing to the University of Michigan?

I’m really excited [and also] sort of nervous, because I know they’re going to make me work really hard, harder than I’ve worked before, [with] the workouts and how intense and fast-paced college volleyball is. I’m excited because I already love everybody there, and I know it’s going to be a lot of fun.

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