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Chop Robinson Makes Debut On ESPN’s ‘Hey, Rookie’

Former Penn State football defensive end Chop Robinson made his debut on ESPN’s “Hey, Rookie: Welcome to the NFL” Monday night.

In his appearance, Robinson joined a cohort of Nittany Lions to earn a feature on the show, following in the footsteps of Joey Porter Jr., Micah Parsons, and others.

Robinson was the second NFL prospect featured on the episode behind Alabama’s Terrion Arnold, a projected first-round selection at cornerback. While Robinson isn’t projected to land as high as Arnold, he was pinned to land in the first round after his NFL Combine performance.

The segment led by featuring Robinson’s unique first name, which he said at Penn State’s Pro Day raised questions from NFL teams in interviews.

“When I was born, I was 14 pounds. My nickname was ‘Porkchop’ at first,” Robinson said on the show. “But then, once I got older, I started to slim down. So I took the ‘pork’ out and kept the ‘chop.'”

Robinson said he started playing football at five years old when his father introduced him to the sport. Robinson started playing as a center but soon realized he had a knack for attacking off the edge.

“As I started to get older, being on the edge and how quick I was getting off the line every time off the ball, I was able to adapt to it pretty quick,” Robinson said. “I knew if I took it seriously, I could really get somewhere.”

Robinson started his collegiate career at Maryland, citing his commitment as a decision based on the COVID-19 pandemic. However, he felt out of position playing for the Terrapins. He said his relationship with Penn State made for an easy decision to enter the transfer portal.

“When you have the confidence and you know what you’re able to do, why not bet on yourself?” Robinson said.

At Penn State, Robinson thrived. During his junior season, Robinson recorded 15 tackles, 7.5 for a loss, four sacks, and two forced fumbles. Along with fellow edge rusher Adisa Isaac, Robinson gave Penn State a reputation for having a dangerous defensive line.

The show also focused on Robinson’s preparation for the combine as he trained for the 40-yard dash.

Robinson said the 40-yard dash is critical for his position as an edge rusher. The first 10 yards alone show NFL teams how fast he can get from the line of scrimmage to a quarterback, but Robinson was focused on running the full distance, too.

Robinson’s training for the combine paid off. He shocked scouts with a 4.48-second 40-yard dash and ran the first 10 yards in 1.54 seconds, the latter of which was the fastest time for a player his size in two decades.

You can see more of Robinson at 7 p.m. on Monday, April 15, on ESPN as “Hey, Rookie” continues.

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About the Author

Joe Lister

Joe is a junior journalism major at Penn State and Onward State's managing editor. He covers Penn State football, among other Penn State sports. He also listens to Mac Miller more than you. If you want to find him, Joe's usually watching soccer with his shirt off or at the gym with his shirt on. For dumb stuff, follow him on Twitter (iamjoelister). For serious stuff, email him ([email protected]).

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