||Rob was a three-sport, football, basketball and track star at Chelan High School. He earned a berth on the 'A' classification all-state team in football as a senior at defensive back and was also all-league at running back.
Rob played football at Walla Walla Community College for two seasons before transferring to Brigham Young University. At WWCC, he was an honorable mention junior college all-American defensive back as well as first team all-Northwest Community College. During the 1983 season, Rob was the backup cornerback and a stalwart on special teams for BYU. Slated to start as a senior, he was injured in the spring game and became an injury redshirt during the 1984 campaign in which the Cougars were 12-0 and declared national champions. In 1985, Rob was a defensive leader for BYU, intercepting four passes including a game-saver at the six-yardline in the waning moments against 4th ranked Air Force. The Cougar defense ranked 18th overall in the nation that year. BYU won the WAC title and ranked #9 in the country, but lost to Ohio State in the Citrus Bowl to finish at #16 with an 11-3 record. He was a three-time NCW Sports Awards finalist and was the recipient of the 1986 NCW College Male Athlete of the Year award.