Don Robbins

Donald Roy Robbins[1] (born c. 1934) is a former American football coach. He was the head coach at the University of Idaho from 1970 to 1973, with a record of 20–24.

Don Robbins
Biographical details
Bornc. 1934 (age 85–86)
Fort Worth, Texas
Alma materTexas A&M University
B.S., M.Ed.[1]
Playing career
1953–1955Texas A&M
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1957Texas A&M (Freshmen)
1958Port Arthur HS (TX)
1959–1960Snyder HS (TX)
1961–1962Big Spring HS (TX) (assistant)
1963–1965Big Spring HS (TX)
1966–1967Texas Western / UTEP (DL)
1968–1969Idaho (DL)
1976–?Big Spring HS (TX)
Head coaching record
Overall20–24 (college)
Accomplishments and honors
Big Sky Conference (1971)

Playing careerEdit

An identical twin born in Fort Worth, Texas, Robbins grew up primarily in Breckenridge, one of three sons of football coach Cooper Robbins, Sr.[2][3] Along with twin brother Ron, he graduated from Breckenridge High School in 1952, where his father was the head football coach for seven seasons (1945–1951), then became the freshman football coach at Texas A&M in 1952, and son Don played for him that first season.

Following Robbins' sophomore season, Paul "Bear" Bryant was hired as the head coach at A&M and Robbins was a member of the Junction Boys as a junior end in September 1954. He graduated in 1956 and later earned a master's degree in education from A&M.

Coaching careerEdit

After coaching in Texas at Big Spring High School, Robbins became a collegiate assistant coach in 1966 at Texas Western (renamed the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) in 1967) under head coach Bobby Dobbs.[4] After two seasons in El Paso, he was hired as an assistant at Idaho in April 1968 under first-year head coach Y C McNease.[5][6][7]

When McNease was dismissed after spring drills in May 1970,[8][9][10][11] Robbins was promoted to head coach of the Vandals.[10][11][12][13] His 1971 team had the best record in the history of the school at 8–3, but the next two seasons were less successful and he was dismissed in November 1973.[14][15][16] He was succeeded by Ed Troxel, an assistant under Robbins and his two predecessors (and the head track coach).[17]

Robbins returned to Big Spring High School as head coach and athletic director in 1976.[18]

Head coaching recordEdit


Year Team Overall Conference Standing Bowl/playoffs
Idaho Vandals (Big Sky Conference) (1970–1973)
1970 Idaho 4–7 2–2 5th
1971 Idaho 8–3 4–1 1st
1972 Idaho 4–7 2–3 5th
1973 Idaho 4–7 3–2 3rd
Idaho: 20–24 11–8
Total: 20–24
      National championship         Conference title         Conference division title or championship game berth


  1. ^ a b - UTEP 1967-68 academic catalog - p.15
  2. ^ Robbins, Darelle (2016). "Cooper Robbins, Jr". Concussion Legacy Foundation. Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  3. ^ "Cooper Robbins, Jr". (obituary). Retrieved September 4, 2017.
  4. ^ Game day program - UTEP at Utah - 1967-11-25 - p.12
  5. ^ "Donald Robbins joins Vandals' football staff". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). April 3, 1968. p. 12.
  6. ^ "Idaho hires Don Robbins from UTEP". Spokesman Review. (Spokane, Washington). Associated Press. April 3, 1968. p. 17.
  7. ^ "Don Robbins named to replace Rogers". Idaho Argonaut. (Moscow). (University of Idaho). April 5, 1968. p. 8.
  8. ^ "Idaho officials debating possible coaching change". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). May 9, 1970. p. 12.
  9. ^ Bacharach, Sam A. (May 16, 1970). "McNease fired from Vandal football coaching job". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). p. 12.
  10. ^ a b "Idaho fires Y C McNease; assistant Robbins boosted". Spokesman-Review. (Spokane, Washington). May 17, 1970. p. 2, sports.
  11. ^ a b "McNease ousted; Robbins chosen". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). May 16, 1970. p. 13.
  12. ^ "Robbins picked to coach Idaho". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). May 17, 1970. p. 12.
  13. ^ Robbins to replace McNease at Idaho Tri-City Herald Associated Press - 1970-05-17 - p.38
  14. ^ "Board demands Robbins resign or be fired". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). November 30, 1973. p. 19.
  15. ^ "Robbins bitter as Idaho prepares for dismissal". Spokane Daily Chronicle. (Washington). November 30, 1973. p. 17.
  16. ^ "Don unloads...Knecht next? out?". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). December 1, 1973. p. 15.
  17. ^ "'Trox' changes mind, accepts Vandal grid challenge". Lewiston Morning Tribune. (Idaho). December 20, 1973. p. 17.
  18. ^ - Big Spring High School - El Rodeo yearbook - 1977 - p.177