FSU, UF running backs rooting for each other at 2020 NFL Scouting Combine

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Florida State running back Cam Akers speaks during a press conference at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2020. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy) / Florida running back Lamical Perine (2) holds the MVP trophy after the Orange Bowl NCAA college football game against Virginia, Monday, Dec. 30, 2019, in Miami Gardens, Fla. Florida won 36-28. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WFLA) – Rivals their entire college careers, Florida State University running back Cam Akers and University of Florida running back Lamical Perine now carry a “Sunshine” badge of honor, hoping to become the next crop of backs from the state to make a splash in the NFL.

Akers finished his third season at FSU last year with a career-high in touchdowns (14) and rushing yards (1,144). Perine combined for 11 touchdowns in 2019 (rushing and receiving) and proved to be a dual-threat as a runner and pass catcher in the Gators explosive offense.

There is mutual respect between the two as both players found themselves navigating coaching changes during their respective careers.

“I was just talking to him when we got here (Combine),” said Perine. “He’s a great guy. Whoever gets him is going to get a great player, high-intensity guy.”

Akers has arrived at the 2020 NFL Scouting Combine as a bit of a sleeper in the draft discussion. The Seminoles’ struggles on offense the past two seasons cut into Akers’ potential on the statistical side but another part of his game emerged, blocking.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers met with Akers in Indianapolis and the process of getting on to the Bucs draft board is in progress. For Akers, it could result in a chance to play with another former FSU star, quarterback Jameis Winston.

“Just to be able to play alongside Jameis would be a fun experience,” said Akers. “That would be something I’d definitely like to take advantage of.”

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