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Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Cedric Ogbuehi rehabbing injuries together

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Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press
Oregon CB Ifo Ekpre-Olomu missed the CFB Playoff because of a knee injury.

It's not easy for Oregon cornerback Ifo Ekpre-Olomu to feel sorry for himself, and that's the way he wants it.


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Ekpre-Olomu is rehabilitating a knee injury that forced him out of the Ducks' playoff games against Florida State and Ohio State. But while recovering and training at Proactive Sports Performance in Orange County, Calif., he said he's been inspired by Texas A&M offensive tackle Cedric Ogbuehi, who is rehabbing a knee injury of his own.

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"He's a lot stronger than me, so it really just pushes me every single day," Ekpre-Olomu said, according to stack.com. "When you see him putting on weight, and you know he's 300-something pounds, and then I'm a cornerback, it really just gives me that added motivation. Every day I can just put five more pounds on, or I can go one more extra set. And having a partner to work out with you every day brings out the best in both of you."

The two have little in common on the field, playing on opposite sides of the ball and with more than 100 pounds separating them in size. But one trait they share is that each is considered among the top prospects available in the 2015 NFL Draft at their respective positions. Both made a difficult decision to stay in college to play as a senior in 2014, one that would be easy to question, in retrospect, because of the injuries they suffered. Their play was criticized at times last year as well, so the two now share a very common goal in recovering as quickly as possible to show NFL coaches and scouts as much as possible before draft day.

"I think it's been really great getting to know him," Ekpre-Olomu said. "He's a really good guy, and you can tell that he's a hard worker, and that's why he's at the position that he's at today.

Ogbuehi has impressive balance and footwork as a three-year starter on the Aggies offensive line, but there are questions as to whether he is better suited for left or right tackle in the NFL. During the season, he was moved to right tackle for a few weeks, leading to speculation about his effectiveness on the left side. Like Ogbuehi, questions about Ekpre-Olomu are also about position projection -- his size (5-10, 195 pounds) and skill-set could make him better suited for a nickelback role in the NFL rather than cornerback, where more size and length is required.

NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah rates Ogbuehi as the 48th-ranked prospect in the draft; Ekpre-Olomu is currently outside the top 50.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.

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