Stratford High Senior guard Kyle Robinson has been waiting for his chance, for his moment to step up into the limelight of Red Devils varsity basketball and make a difference.
Playing behind a big senior class a year ago, Robinson has emerged this winter as a key player in Stratford’s strategy, especially on the defensive end of the court where he often finds himself guarding one of the better players on the opposing team.
On Monday night, Robinson and his teammates will be looking to slow down their arch-rivals from Bunnell High School. Days before the game, Robinson went “On the Record” with the Stratford Sports Scene.
STRATFORD SPORTS SCENE: What’s the best thing about Stratford High School?
KYLE ROBINSON: I want to say just all the different types of sports teams and programs we have here. There’s something for everyone.
SSS: If you could change one thing about the school, what would it be?
KR: The food. The pizza is good, but the other food, it’s questionable.
SSS: What teacher or coach has had the biggest impact on you so far in your career?
KR: Coach? Obviously, (boys basketball coach Tim) Swaller. But teacher? (Social studies teacher) Zachary Thomas. When I came here my freshman year, I was kind of a knucklehead, but he reminded me that there were bigger things out there.
SSS: This team suffered some big losses via graduation last year, including five seniors playing key roles. That means much of this year’s team is vastly different. What’s it like out there?
KR: Honestly, you’ve just got to go out and work. Truthfully, it’s a big loss but it’s our time. We’re up now and we just have to go out there and play our butts off. That’s it.
SSS: You’re a guard on this team, but you’ve found yourself out there guarding a lot of good players. Is that your role on the team?
KR: I pride myself on my defense. On the court, I bring the energy. I’m the guy keeping us upbeat and I’m the rah-rah guy. I’m talking, not like bad, but I’m a competitor. But yeah, I pride myself on guarding the best guy
SSS: What’s it take to be a good defender?
KR: Truthfully it takes a lot. You can’t just be standing in front of somebody. There’s timing and how to turn a guy, watch his waist, find out which way he wants to take you. It takes a lot of hard work. You want to make sure that this guy isn’t scoring. That’s my mindset.
SSS: Would you rather dunk a basketball, or hit a 3-point shot at the buzzer?
KR: A 3-pointer definitely. A dunk is exciting, but when you hit that 3-pointer at the buzzer, it’s just like wow.
SSS: What is your earliest sports memory?
KR: I played down south in Alabama, like (youth) football and they take it seriously down there. I was here until I was about eight and we moved down there for a few years, but I came back in like fifth grade.
SSS: What does the Stratford-Bunnell rivalry mean to you?
KR: A lot of my friends are over there. They’re my boys. But on the court, we’re going at each other. After the game, we’re boys and the love is there.
SSS: The holiday season just wrapped up. What was your favorite Christmas gift?
KR: Air pods. I can keep them in when I warm up, or shoot around at halftime of the JV game. No wires hanging all over the place. They’re nice.
SSS: Did you make a New Year’s resolution?
KR: Just be better. Be better at the sport I love. I hate it, and I love it. I’ve put so much into this game that I hate it when I can’t do what I want to do but I love it when you get it.
SSS: What scares you?
KR: Truthfully, I’m not really frightened by things, but I think losing a loved one.
SSS: What is the go-to, pump-up jam that you listen to before a game?
KR: “Medicine Man” by Dr. Dre and Eminem.
SSS: If you had one do-over in your life, what would you do over?
KR: That’s a good question. There’s a lot. I don’t even know.
SSS: What’s your perfect breakfast?
KR: Bagel, with some bacon and sausage on it with some cheese. I hate eggs. And a side of orange juice with some grapes.
SSS: The ideal midnight snack?
KR: I just like some yogurt or some chips. Nothing too bad.
SSS: And, your favorite home-cooked meal?
KR: I love ziti. Ziti with some rice and beans.
SSS: Hollywood is making a movie of your life. What’s the title and who stars as you?
KR: “K.D.’s Show.” That’s my nickname. My name is Kyle Damian Robinson so KD sounds better than KDR. Who stars as me? I’d have my nephew Makier play me.
SSS: What one word best describes Kyle Robinson?