Heading into this weekend's ACC Indoor Track and Field Championships, junior Marcus Robinson is coming off a personal-best leap of 49' 11" in the triple jump. His mark ranks seventh all-time at UVa and is currently fourth in the league this season.
This weekend, Robinson looks to help the Cavaliers improve upon their program-best third-place finish at ACCs a year ago. Events are scheduled to run Friday and Saturday at Virginia Tech's Rector Field House.
Question: Earlier this season, Ryan Collins mentioned that if he could be anyone on the team, he'd want to be you in order to fulfill his dream of dunking. Is it true that you can dunk?
Robinson: Yes it is true that I can dunk. I am a pretty good basketball player; I used to play for my high school varsity team.
Question: How did you get involved in track and field?
Robinson: The main reason I got involved with track was to get - or stay - in shape for football. Things turned out well for me in this sport, so I decided to stick with it.
Question: Your high school coach was Keith Witherspoon - UVa's record holder indoor and outdoor in the triple jump. Did your decision to come to Virginia have anything to do with his ties to the University?
Robinson: A lot of my decision to come to Virginia had to do with my coach. He is a great coach and I can only hope to be as good as he was.
Question: What was it like to learn from someone so accomplished and specific to the triple jump as Witherspoon?
Robinson: It was great to learn from an expert in the triple jump. I learned a lot from him. One of the main things that he told me was that the triple jump requires lots of patience.
Question: Did learning from him help you set any goals in the event?
Robinson: I hope one day that I can become UVa's new triple jump record holder.
Question: With ACCs this week, what are your expectations for the meet?
Robinson: I am pretty confident about the conference meet coming up. My jumps this indoor season have been great, but I am never satisfied and always hungry for more. I only hope to put out some big number at the conference meet against some good competition.
Question: You had a successful outdoor season last year, earning All-ACC honors in the triple jump. How much different is the event indoors compared to outdoors?
Robinson: To me, not much is different from indoors to outdoors. The only thing that really changes is the weather and atmosphere. I must always be prepared for what the weather may dish out, which makes outdoors a fun season.
Question: If Ryan Collins were to choose to be you because jumping sounds better than distance running, who on the track and field team would you choose to be?
Robinson: I would choose to be Ryan Collins actually. We always joke about me running the 5k in his place and him taking my place in the triple jump. I think it would be fun to try and see how different the running styles are from a sprint to a distance event.