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Nick Saban likens Denard Robinson to Cam Newton

Denard Robinson, Detrick Bonner. Luther Maddy AP

Alabama-Michigan is (rightfully so) being hyped up as the biggest game of college football’s opening weekend.

Tide coach Nick Saban is already talking big too. Not about his team, but Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson. During a Monday press conference, Saban connected the senior quarterback to another dual-threat Alabama fans are more familiar with: ex-Auburn QB Cam Newton.

“They have as significant a player as we’ve seen since we played Cam Newton [in 2010], in terms of what he can do in a game, and how the offense is built around and features him. 

“They have lots of good players, but he’s the guy that — whether it’s a zone-read play or a quarterback power, or pass play — he makes a lot of significant plays in the game that impact the game by what he does.

“He’s extremely fast, and has become a better passer each game, each year, and that’s a key.”

Robinson’s ability to pass the ball will be a focal point not only on Saturday, but during the season. Shoelace has said he’s made significant strides this offseason in that department, but anyone who watched the Wolverines play last season knows there were far too many arm punts from Robinson to feel the same way.

That was never an issue with Newton.

But Robinson has speed, he has quickness. There’s no doubt he can be a game changer. The question is will it be for better or worse on Saturday.

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22 Responses to “Nick Saban likens Denard Robinson to Cam Newton”
  1. burm61 says: Aug 27, 2012 8:52 PM

    Too bad Cam Newton is good and Denard isn’t.

  2. polegojim says: Aug 27, 2012 9:14 PM

    HA HA HA Burm… pretty gutless comment and not even remotely funny.

    Give the man his respect – he’s caused many excellent defenders to come out of their shorts trying to stop him.

    Looking forward to the Gard/Rob wrinkle

  3. jonanthans says: Aug 27, 2012 9:23 PM

    The 2 guys arent anything close to resembling each other. Cam was a bruiser, too big for one guy to tackle alone. Shoelace is small and shifty. Yeah he can juke, but he cant throw a pass for crap. And we know what Bama does to teams with non-passing Qbs..

    Bama 42
    Michigan 17

  4. burm61 says: Aug 27, 2012 9:25 PM

    How does he deserve his due? Any good defense he has faced he doesn’t do much. Sugar Bowl he three up balls, got lucky, so ESPN’s flavor of the month is number 8 and going to get stomped like Bama did to Michigan State 2 years ago in the bowl game

  5. barnesaintnoble says: Aug 27, 2012 9:55 PM

    He isn’t the same as Cam – but I don’t think that is what Saban said.

    Say what you want about Denard, but if you watched him the past couple years he just makes out of this world plays and seems to always have luck on his side. I’m not saying he will lead them to the win, but I’m not saying he won’t either. =)

  6. datdangdrewdundunituhgin says: Aug 27, 2012 10:21 PM

    denard has gotten markedly better as a passer each year. his freshman season he looked like a track star with no organized football experience. that said, the comparison to newton is laughable. he really hasn’t stepped up like i would like him to against good defenses (MSU), but his playmaking ability ensures that he never has to rely on being an all-american passer to win games. i like what hoke has done with the offense, and bama has lost enough starters on defense that the game could be interesting for awhile… but bama is too much, and UofM is over-rated IMO.

    bama 38
    UofM 20

  7. blackmike2 says: Aug 27, 2012 10:26 PM

    it’s probable that saban is getting his team’s attention, and, of course, before any big game you always talk the other side up, say swell things about them. as to whether robinson or anyone else is “another cam newton,” well, that’s a pretty big order. you can only know a person’s complete body of work after they finish it, not during.

  8. 1990tiger says: Aug 27, 2012 11:10 PM

    From what I’ve seen of Robinson’s passing game over the past several years, he just throws the ball up and hopes for the best. I’ve never checked his stats but he seems to have as many incomplete passes and interceptions as he does completed passes. He is quick but I think Bama’s defense will shut that aspect of his game down pretty quickly. He isn’t a big guy so a few good hits from Bama’s D and he likely won’t want to run the ball much.

  9. drjem says: Aug 28, 2012 5:37 AM

    I watched the kid (Denard) play as he grew up. He played for Deerfield Beach HS just up the road from me & while I thought he was an “ok” player, I knew when he was offered the scholarship that GO BLUE was in trouble. Denard will NEVER be a franchise QB; & while he has a moderate degree of quickness, Alabama isn’t Pompano Beach, Cardinal Gibbons, Coral Springs, Coconut Creek…Alabama is “THE” Tide & 1990 tiger is right, once the Ghost of Bear Bryant walks those sidelines & whispers into the ears of Alabama linemen, Denard is going to feel the pain of the proverbial Elephant. But, hey….I’m a grad & fan of Miami & have no dog in this Alabama – Michigan game. Just hope it is entertaining & Bama doesn’t just crush Michigan in the first quarter. Also, I know….I know….my Hurricanes are an embarrassment right now.

  10. monsterright says: Aug 28, 2012 7:38 AM

    I remember sCam finishing games against physical teams. Robinson has to come out often and has missed games too. Expect more of the same against Bama.

  11. florida727 says: Aug 28, 2012 8:11 AM

    I find it funny that if a QB is black and can run, he’s immediately compared to Cam Newton nowadays. These two are nothing alike. Cam is a far better passer. Denard is much quicker. Cam clearly reads defenses better too. Their similarity is that they’re both potential game changers, though even at that, Cam is proven, Denard is not (yet).

    Should be a great game to watch though. Can’t wait. College football… best time of the year, best sport on the planet.

  12. chrisjfla says: Aug 28, 2012 8:18 AM

    Denard threw for 2,570 yards (62.5 pct) and 18 TD’s with 11 int’s in 2010 and 2,173 (55 pct) with 20 TD’s and 15 int’s last year (in a new offense). Add that to the 1,700 yards rushing and 14 TD’s in 2010 and 1,176 yards and 16 TD’s last year and you have one of the most dangerous players in CFB today. Not saying that are going to beat Bama but all the Denard haters need to do some research

  13. mountaineer50415 says: Aug 28, 2012 8:44 AM

    Let us say that Cam and Denard are both game changers. That said, Cam Newton was so much bigger that he was a lot harder to stop. He consistently threw the bowl and ran if needed. Denard, is more of a scat back with the ability to throw the ball. Because of his size he is not always able to see over the line.
    Pat White was more like Denard Robinson. They are very good football players at the college level. When you get to the NFL or a defensive line like Alabama, everything changes.
    Remember, Alabama put it to Cam Newton in the first quarter. I do not believe they will stop and allow Michigan to make a come back run after they get ahead. They have been there and done that. I will be praying that no one gets hurt. ROLL TIDE

  14. sparty0n says: Aug 28, 2012 8:50 AM

    “all the Denard haters need to do some research”

    And the research will show that good defenses reveal that he is a Percy Harvin type player trying to play QB. The Heisman hype for him @ QB is just stupid! Whit a much tougher schedule this year, it will be obvious that they would have been better off grooming a real QB.

  15. kozbee says: Aug 28, 2012 9:40 AM

    IMO Saban is abit off track comparing these two players as close to equal.Cam had the size of a OL but the speed of a RB.Able to throw a completed pass 40-50 yards away imo Saban won`t see another Cam for a long time.Denard is a shifty type QB with great speed that can get into an open field and burn any d-line.Can he pass,sure good arm just some that think he throws it up for luck,wrong.Denard is a crafty QB that if he had the size Cam had then we could compare these two.Over the past couple seasons this kid has grown to be a much better QB then expected but against a big strong defense can he perform against Bama.If U.M wins then imo it will be time to talk trash but this game will be close.How good is the defense from the Wolverines and just how good will the QB from Bama be,is he the NC QB he was last season,Saturday will do all the talking and imo will be a great game.Bama by 13 points.I like both teams…

  16. beedubyatoo says: Aug 28, 2012 10:10 AM

    If Robinson is that good he would have been all B1G last season, rather than Wilson.

    Besides, Cam ties his shoes.

  17. 1historian says: Aug 28, 2012 10:23 AM

    Denard is shifty and fast.

    So are the Alabama defensive backs

    So are the Alabama linebackers

    So are the Alabama Defensive linemen

    So are their backups

    And THEIR backups


  18. Romulus says: Aug 28, 2012 10:58 AM

    all the people now admit Cam is a good qb. Before they all said he wasn’t a good passer. eat your words. Saban is eating his. With all that being said… Michigan is an over rated team and an over rated program. Crimson Red necks roll over shoe lace. War Damn Eagle.

  19. tlmoon2112 says: Aug 28, 2012 12:26 PM

    So does Michigan have any trees on their campus that Bama fans can kill?

  20. lakesidegator says: Aug 28, 2012 6:14 PM

    Saban moved his lips again. No truth came out.

  21. kozbee says: Aug 29, 2012 9:00 AM

    Alabama experienced the worst loss ever in Bama history up 24/0 only to be shutdown by an Auburn team and go on to lose 28/27.IMO the best Ironbowl game ever played.Cam brought the Tigers back for maybe one of his best games he will always remember.Now can Michigan do that,i doubt that very much.Bama should win this game,but it should be the game of the week.No way to compare Cam & Denard.War Eagle to the Auburn fans.

  22. irisheyesnate says: Aug 30, 2012 11:53 AM

    BAMA IS GONNA CRUSH michigan!!!!!

    D-retard Robinson is gonna get hurt in this one!! Mark my words!!!

    GO IRISH!!!!

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