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'This is like my Super Bowl MVP': Former Florida State football player earns degree

Posted at 10:36 PM, Jul 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-30 23:04:51-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Florida State held their first of two graduations Friday afternoon, and among those graduating was former Florida State football player Devonta Freeman. Freeman left Florida State to play in the NFL after the 2013 season. He said he's taken at least one class a semester since then to get to this point, and now, he can celebrate his diploma.

"This is like my Super Bowl MVP," he said smiling before Friday's ceremony. "This is what that is for me, and this is what that means for me."

Freeman has won a National title. He's led the NFL in rushing touchdowns, and he's played in a Super Bowl. He said nothing compares to earning his degree in sociology.

"I started it and I wanted to finish it," he said. "I'm more than an athlete. Knowledge is power and I wanted to continue to get better at everything."

It wasn't always easy.

"I made a commitment that I wanted to finish," he said. "I found it motivational to just keep going."

It's an experience and a moment he hopes others can look to for inspiration.

"Just to have people back at home, my family members, my community," he said. "They are watching. It's very important for me to continue to be the example and lead the way."

He's leading the way on the field and off.

"This is my Super Bowl. It's something I wanted my whole life, and I wanted to finish on it. Knowing that it's actually here, it's like wow. It's a surreal moment."

Freeman graduated from high school early to enroll at Florida State, so he missed his high school graduation. He'd never had the chance to walk across the stage until Friday's ceremony.