Vick Ballard, Josh Robinson, Share Special Bond In Colts Backfield

Intro: After being together at Mississippi State in 2011, Vick Ballard and Josh Robinson are once again in the same backfield, sharing a special bond.

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INDIANAPOLIS – What Vick Ballard remembers about freshman year Josh Robinson is a pudgy newbie, one though who could scoot in a hurry.

Ballard was a returning starter to Mississippi State in 2011, after rushing for 19 touchdowns on 5.2 yards per carry.

So, why was Ballard looking over his shoulder at Robinson?

"(Robinson) came in overweight, but he ran hard," Ballard said of that 2011 fall camp at Mississippi State.

"At the time, he was out of shape, but you could still see the flashes. We had three other running backs, but I really wasn't worried about them. I was a senior, but I was like, 'I've got to make sure this little freshman doesn't take my spot.' I saw potential in him when he was young. He was always a hard worker."

Even though Ballard was keeping close tabs on Robinson, it was the freshman who admired the Bulldogs lead back.

"Vick Ballard taught me everything I know," Robinson said after being drafted by the Colts earlier this month.

"He taught me never to give up. I always give a relentless effort. He just gave me the mindset to be the best I can be and just be 'J-Rob' at all times. I always translated that and that made me the player I am today."

Under a 2011 redshirt year behind Ballard, Robinson patiently waited his turn.

Mississippi State used Robinson sparingly in 2012 and 2013 (with Ballard in the NFL) before he became a full-time starter this past fall.

Ballard, always an avid supporter of his college team, watched in 2014 as Robinson helped Mississippi State to their first No. 1 ranking in school history.

The pin-ball-like run Robinson had against Kentucky (breaking eight tackles) last year is the type of hard-nosed running that Ballard says Colts fans can expect from their new rookie running back.

With Ballard still in Indy (rehabbing) this offseason, he had a feeling Robinson was going to join him again.

"I talked to some of the coaches here when we brought (Robinson) in for a (top-30) visit and everybody liked him," Ballard said.

"When he was still hanging around in the sixth round, I knew we were probably going to take him."

And outside of a little more tone in his body, what else is new about 'J-Rob'?

"Same old Josh," Ballard said. "He has a really good personality. Same personality. Same hard working. Same dude.

"Josh isn't going to change for nobody and that's what I like about him."

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