And it really helped strength-wise and speed-wise.
"I got a lot stronger. I moved up 80 pounds on the bench and over 100 pounds on the squat," said Robert, who is up to 197 pounds. "I now bench 315. When I first got here I was squatting 275; now I'm squatting 400. I've also gotten faster."
He also became much better at all the details required not only of of a Southeastern Conference running back, but from a very demanding head coach in Sylvester Croom.
"Where should I start - I've gotten better at taking a handoff, footwork, learning how to read holes, pass protection, learning how to look the ball in. All of that," said Robert, when asked what details he's gotten better at.
Running back coach Rockey Felker is looking forward to seeing all that progress on the field during the spring.
"We are anxious to work with him this spring and see where he is," said Rockey, who is in his second year as Mississippi State's running backs coach. "We know his attitude is really good. And he's picked up the offense well. His work habits are good, and his overall toughness has really come on. I think the year in the weight room has helped him."
As for Robert's goal this spring, it is very simple.
"This spring my goal is to just come out here and work hard; take each day like it's my last day," said the quiet but confident youngster.