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Oregon State coach is enjoying his Barack Obama connection

January 19, 2009 |  2:00 pm

Michelle Obama, left, with brother, Craig Robinson, at the Democratic National Convention in Denver on Aug. 25, 2008.

Craig Robinson has a famous sister (soon-to-be First Lady Michelle Obama), but, at heart, he's still the Oregon State University head basketball coach.

Though most of Saturday's news conference dealt with the Beavers' 61-57 overtime loss to Washington State, Robinson fielded a few questions from reporters about how he's dealing with Tuesday's inauguration of brother-in-law Barack Obama.

"I'm very excited, and while I would have loved to have gone out there with in a win in my pocket, it's not going to dampen the excitement," Robinson told reporters. "It's such an honor to be a part of it as a citizen of the United States, let along the fact that my family is deeply involved in it. I'm just humbled by what's going to take place on Tuesday. I'm very excited; my family is very excited."

Here's how Robinson responded when asked if he's been able to absorb the fact that his sister is about to be the first lady:

It was getting to the point where I was getting used to people saying 'President-elect Barack Obama,' and how my sister, Michelle, was going to be the first lady. And all of that was starting to sink in very nicely. And then people say, 'Oh, by the way, you know that when you go out there, you're going to stay in the White House. Then it goes all the way back to where I can't believe this is happening. ... it's still such a weird feeling.

When asked if he'll be able to keep his head in the presidential game while in Washington, D.C., for the inauguration and festivities, Robinson grinned and said:

You guys have got me figured out. I'm going to try and pay attention at the inauguration. I'm sure that at the [inaugural] balls I'll be shaking hands and thinking 'How are we going to stop the Randle kid from shooting threes."

That would be Cal's Jerome Randle. The Beavers play the Bears on Thursday in Berkeley.

-- Greg Johnson

Photo: Michelle Obama, left, with brother, Craig Robinson, at the Democratic National Convention in Denver on Aug. 25, 2008. Credit: Ron Edmonds / Associated Press

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