Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

County athletic director targets Zephyrhills football program for recruiting

A recruiting investigation at Zephyrhills has resulted in the removal of a volunteer football assistant and could result in further action, Pasco County athletic director Phil Bell said Friday.

Bell, who is leading the investigation, declined further comment when asked if Jerrell Cogmon remained head coach.

Zephyrhills assistant Abel Robinson was let go Thursday after admitting to improper communication with students at Wesley Chapel. Robinson said football players from Wesley Chapel, where he is an instructional aide for special education and coached last season, contacted him via text message once he took a coaching post with Zephyrhills.

Cogmon, who was hired in April after longtime coach Tom Fisher retired, had no comment.

The Florida High School Athletic Association prohibits contact between coaches and athletes from different schools. The FHSAA also prohibits students from following coaches to new schools.

"They asked where I was at and why I wasn't on 7-on-7, things like that," Robinson said. "Yeah, I was talking to kids. I talk to everybody. It's the same way I talk to kids at Zephyrhills that I coached at the middle school."

The investigation began after Wesley Chapel alleged Robinson had recruited sophomore-to-be Jamal Roberts to Zephyrhills. Robinson adamantly denies recruiting anyone but admits he did communicate with students, including Roberts.

Robinson said Roberts moved into Zephyrhills' district to live with his grandfather because of discipline problems.

"(His mother) said: 'That's it. I'm out of here (Wesley Chapel). I don't want you hanging with those kids,' " Robinson said. "They live in Pasco's zone, but she didn't want him going to Dade City so she had him move in with his grandpa."

Investigators also asked Robinson about recruiting Wesley Chapel senior-to-be and tight end Chris Pierre Charles.

"Chris and I had an in-depth conversation about him not transferring," Robinson said. "He told the guy at (Florida International) he was going to go to Pasco. The guy from FIU said if you transfer I'm going to take your scholarship away. … We talked about him not even leaving Wesley Chapel."

Izzy Gould can be reached at

County athletic director targets Zephyrhills football program for recruiting 08/07/09 [Last modified: Monday, November 7, 2011 5:41pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Pro Bowl returning to Orlando in 2018


    ORLANDO — The Pro Bowl will return to Orlando in 2018 for the second straight year.

    Bucs  wide receiver Mike Evans runs a route as Denver Broncos cornerback Chris Harris Jr. defends during the first quarter of the AFC-NFC Pro Bowl in January at Camping World Stadium in Orlando. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]
  2. Erasmo Ramirez makes his third start of the season.
  3. If Tony Dungy sticks around, he'll broadcast the 2021 Tampa Super Bowl for NBC


    Lost in the Super Tuesday news of the Super Bowl coming back to Tampa was this nugget:

    Pictured, from left, Dan Patrick, co-Host, Tony Dungy, studio analyst, Aaron Rodgers. [Ben Cohen/NBC]
  4. Tragedy, tenacity helped shape Ridgewood valedictorian Johannah Cummines

    Volleyball Preps

    NEW PORT RICHEY — Even if her daily routine didn't permit calories to melt off, Johannah Cummines would deserve to pick anything on the menu.

    Ridgewood High senior Johannah Cummines and mom Chenell. Cummines is headed to Florida Atlantic, where she will play beach volleyball. (Photo courtesy of Johannah Cummines)
  5. Bucs Roberto Aguayo kicks off 2017 on the wrong foot


    The goal posts still seem to be moving for Roberto Aguayo.

    The Bucs woebegone place-kicker, who is in a battle with veteran Nick Folk, went 1-for-4 in field goal tries from 35-40 yards Tuesday on a set of narrow uprights, the first day of full squad Organized Team Activities.

    If that weren’t …

    Roberto Aguayo went 1-for-4 in field goal tries from 35-40 yards Tuesday on a set of narrow uprights.