February 23, 2013

Bell eager to excel at NFL Combine

INDIANAPOLIS - Michigan State running back Le'Veon Bell gained notice this week when he weighed in a bit lighter and leaner than some expected.

Bell is hoping to follow up with a surprisingly fleet showing during testing at the NFL Scouting Combine.

"I just want to prove a lot of people wrong," Bell said.

Bell was listed at 237 pounds as a senior at Michigan State, although it's believed that he played at a greater weight than that.

Bell was highly productive as a Spartan. He led the Big Ten in rushing at 137.9 yards per game (1,793 yards, and 4.7 per carry). He ranked No. 3 nationally in the FBS in rushing yards per game.

He also led the nation in carries with 382.

"A lot of people look at me like I'm big and slow," Bell said. "Once I weighed in and everybody saw that i had six percent body fat, that opened a lot of peoples' eyes. I'm in the best shape of my life now. I feel a lot lighter, a lot quicker, a lot more explosive, faster. I just want to show what I can do."

Bell is listed as the No. 10-ranked running back in the draft by NFLDraftScout.com, projected as a fourth-round pick.

Bell elected to join the NFL Draft rather than come back for his senior year.

"It was the fact that I know I was ready for the next step," Bell said. "I'm so close to graduation from school already. I only have one semester left. I can always go back and finish.

"Coach D (Dantonio), of course he wanted us to stay. But I feel like he was happy for me. He knew my situation and everything. It was hard to tell him I wasn't (coming back), but Coach D was happy for me."

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