OXFORD • As Ole Miss basketball players continue through voluntary strength and conditioning workouts, one young key component has been unavailable.
Rebels coach Kermit Davis is hoping Shon Robinson joins the party this week.
A 6-foot-11 redshirt freshman from Gilbert, Arizona, Robinson is recovering from a tonsillectomy. Back in the Phoenix area for the COVID-19 shutdown, he began having trouble with his throat and with breathing.
After players returned to campus he had his tonsils removed when it was found that an abscess had developed.
The time away and difficulty eating caused Robinson to lose about 25 pounds, Davis estimated.
“He’s probably under 200 pounds now. He’d made a lot of progress, and he’ll be able to gain it back quicker, but that was a big setback.”
Without the shutdown Robinson’s situation would likely have been identified and led to surgery sooner, Davis said.
The only signee yet to report for Ole Miss basketball is Dimencio Vaughn, who is completing one class to earn his degree at Rider and become eligible to join the Rebels as a graduate transfer.
Robinson’s tonsils have been the only health issue. Junior forward Luis Rodriguez has shown no effects from foot surgery though he’s not working out with maximum bench press weight to lessen strain on a wrist that also required surgery.
Robinson would be reporting to campus for the first time as a true freshman now had he not chosen to reclassify late in the 2019 recruiting season. He signed last spring to spend a year in an SEC strength and conditioning program.
Before he reclassified, ESPN ranked Robinson as the No. 85 overall player in the 2019 class.
In late June, Ole Miss media relations released, through social media, video highlights of Robinson in various practice sessions over the 2019-20 year.
With the recent transfer of returning starter Blake Hinson, Robinson will likely be the backup to graduate transfer Romello White at power forward.
Robinson’s athleticism could allow him to play the 3 at times.
“He can shoot it, and you saw on that video that he can pass,” Davis said. “He’s got great hands, really runs, and he’s probably the most instinctive shot-blocker on our team.
“He’s going to be a really good player.”