Mark Ingram has much to prove at NFL combine

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - In a year, Mark Ingram went from a Heisman Trophy winner to a man with much to prove.

Ingram rushed for a school-record 1,658 yards and 17 touchdowns during his Heisman campaign at Alabama in 2009, then struggled a bit this past season. He missed the first two games with a knee injury, thrust himself back into the Heisman conversation with two big games, then split carries with Trent Richardson the rest of the season and never had another 100-yard game.

Now, he's ready to show he's fully healthy and ready for the NFL. He said he will complete all phases of evaluation at the NFL scouting combine.

"I just want to go out here and compete," he said. "I have nothing to hide."

Ingram said he's constantly questioned about his knee.

"It feels great, or I wouldn't be out here getting ready to run and work out," he said.

Ingram said he didn't mind sharing the load with Richardson.

"We had another great running back," he said. "Trent, he needed his touches as well, so I just tried to do what was best for the team. Trent was deserving of all his carries. He was so explosive and such a playmaker that you have to share carries with him."

Ingram said the team that drafts him will get a special player.

"A focused and determined person, really competitive and really driven," he said. "I'm going to try to be the best person I can be and the best player I can be."


ANOTHER POUNCEY: Maurkice Pouncey's success as an NFL rookie has only intensified the sibling rivalry with his twin brother, Mike.

Maurkice was a Pro Bowl selection as a rookie center for the Pittsburgh Steelers this season and helped his team reach the Super Bowl.

"My brother and I - we're fierce competitors," Mike Pouncey said. "All the stuff my brother accomplished, I want to accomplish and even better."

Although Maurkice left Florida early, Mike stayed in school and hopes to be an early pick in this year's draft. Maurkice was the No. 18 pick last year. Mike, who likely will play guard, said he must do better than that.

"I've got to be drafted higher than Maurkice," he said. "Eighteen or better."

And if he isn't?

"I'll never hear the end of it."


GREEN READY: Georgia receiver A.J. Green's ready to answer any questions about why the NCAA suspended him for four games to start his junior season.

"You can talk to anybody I've been around, I definitely don't have any character issues," said Green, who was punished for selling a bowl jersey for $1,000 to someone deemed an agent. "It was bad advice, bad judgment on my part. Growing up, I never faced any adversity like that. That really humbled me."

Green, 6-foot-3 and 211 pounds, led the Bulldogs with 57 catches for 848 yards and nine touchdowns upon his return. Over a three-year college career, he had 166 catches for 2,619 yards and 23 touchdowns.

Now, he wants to show why he should be an early draft selection.

"I match up with the best of them," he said. "I'm tall, I'm big, I'm physical. I feel like I can really come to this league and make a big impact. There's a lot of great receivers out there and I want to be one of the best."


DALLAS AND DUKE: Dallas coach Jason Garrett was so impressed during his recent visit with Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski, he plans to bring some of the college coach's philosophies to the Cowboys.

"You'd be hard-pressed over the last 30 years to find an organization, in or out of sports, college or pro, who has been more successful than Duke basketball," said Garrett, who recently visited Coach K in Durham, N.C. "It really was an amazing weekend. He was very gracious and generous to have me there in the heart of their season."

He was most impressed with Krzyzewski's attention to detail.

"He has an amazing way of creating an environment that's so organized, so systematic, so seamless. The execution and everything they do is off the charts."


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