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Explaining the uncommon spelling of Jereme Robinson's first name

KU D-Lineman has been called "Jerome" more times than he can count

3 min read
Kansas defensive lineman Jereme Robinson works through a drill during a recent practice at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. [Matt Tait photo]

Kansas defensive lineman Jereme Robinson has spent most of his life waiting for the next time someone calls him Jerome.

When I suggested during a recent interview with Robinson — whose first name is pronounced “Jeremy” with the alternate spelling — that he must’ve heard that mispronunciation a million times, the 6-foot-3, 260-pound junior from Montgomery, Alabama, laughed and rolled his eyes.

“It’s probably two times that,” he said. “And it’s crazy because there’s not even an O in my name. I would rather take Ja-reem.”

In all fairness to those Jerome offenders, the fact that the Carver High School grad’s name ends in an E creates one of those tricks on the brain that makes you think you see something that’s not there.

Robinson understands that. And he’s pretty accepting of the whole thing.

However, the fourth-year Jayhawk says his mom, Adrienne Fowler, is not as forgiving.

“She loves yelling at the TV, ‘It’s not Jerome,’” he mimicked, raising his voice for emphasis and laughing while doing it. “She gets into it.”

So, just how uncommon is the spelling of Robinson's first name? According to the website,, the U.S. Social Security Administration recorded just 2,225 usages of the name between 1969 and 2018.

The most recent episode of the Jerome/Jereme mishap came during KU’s triple-overtime loss to Arkansas in the Liberty Bowl in Memphis last December. After the KU lineman recorded one of his two tackles for loss on the day, the public address announcer credited the tackle to "Jerome Robinson" instead of Jereme.

Earlier in the year, after Robinson forced a fumble and nearly scooped it up and went 40 yards for a touchdown against Baylor, the announcer emphatically delivered the “Jerome Robinson” call.

While moments like that have become all too familiar for Robinson and his family, Robinson said they’ve done a pretty good job of letting it go and moving on.

To help with that, Robinson provided a pretty cool note about his first name and why he has the unusual spelling in the first place. It stems from a connection to his cousin Lauryn.

“We were always real close and still are. We contact each other all the time,” Robinson said. “She took my Y and I took her E.”

So, Lauren became Lauryn and Jeremy became Jereme.

Robinson, meanwhile, is looking to become the next defensive force for the Jayhawks and he believes this could be his biggest year yet.

After appearing in six games as a freshman in 2020, Robinson played in nine games in 2021 (with one start) and all 13 games a season ago. He figures to move into the starting lineup full-time this season and will be looking to expand on his career-highs of 34 tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss and 3 sacks, all of which came during the 2022 Liberty Bowl season.

Robinson and the Jayhawks are now less than two weeks out from the 2023 season opener.

Fresh off of a 6-7 season in 2022 and the program’s first trip to a bowl game in 14 years, the Jayhawks will enter the 2023 season picked to finish ninth in the 14-team Big 12 Conference standings and with an over/under win total number of 6 at DraftKings.

Kansas will open the season on Friday, Sept. 1 against Missouri State at David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium. After that the Jayhawks will host Illinois the following Friday and travel to Nevada on Sept. 16 to round out their non-conference slate.

KU will open Big 12 play against conference newcomer BYU on Sept. 23 in Lawrence and will close out September with their final trip to Texas to take on the Longhorns on Sept. 30.

2023 KU Football Schedule (all times central)

Sept. 1 – vs. Missouri State, 7 p.m. (ESPN+)

Sept. 8 – vs. Illinois, 6:30 p.m. (ESPN2)

Sept. 16 – at Nevada, 9:30 p.m. (CBS Sports)

Sept. 23 – vs. BYU (Time and TV TBA)

Sept. 30 – at Texas (Time and TV TBA)

Oct. 7 – vs. UCF (Time and TV TBA)

Oct. 14 – at Oklahoma State (Time and TV TBA)

Oct. 21 – BYE

Oct. 28 – vs. Oklahoma (Time and TV TBA)

Nov. 4 – at Iowa State (Time and TV TBA)

Nov. 11 – vs. Texas Tech (Time and TV TBA)

Nov. 18 – vs. Kansas State (Time and TV TBA)

Nov. 25 – at Cincinnati (Time and TV TBA)

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