BATON ROUGE, La. — The LSU football team received good news Monday afternoon.
Junior wide receiver D.J. Chark, who tied for the team lead with 3 receiving touchdowns in 2016, announced Monday via Twitter that he will return for his senior season in 2017.
Geaux Tigers ? #7 pic.twitter.com/sQA3xIecIr
— DJ Chark (@DJChark82) January 9, 2017
Chark caught 26 balls for 466 yards, accounting for 17.9 yards per reception. Chark also ran 12 times on jet sweeps, gaining 122 yards and 2 touchdowns in motion out of the backfield.
The 6-foot-3 junior fits well into the system of new LSU offensive coordinator Matt Canada, who was known for running jet sweeps and trick plays at Pittsburgh.
Chark is the first of two LSU junior wide receivers to announce his intention. The LSU football program is still waiting to hear a decision from junior wide receiver Malachi Dupre, who led the Tigers with 593 receiving yards and 41 catches in 2016.
Bringing back Chark is huge for LSU’s skill position depth in 2017. LSU loses senior wideout Travin Dural and tight ends Colin Jeter and DeSean Smith to graduation, as well as running back Leonard Fournette to the NFL draft.
Now that Fournette is gone, it seems like Chark will be taking over Fournette’s No. 7, a number that was previously worn by LSU greats Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu.
With the announcement of DJ Chark's return, a bigger stor is revealed
— Sam Spiegelman (@samspiegs) January 9, 2017
After Chark and Dupre, LSU’s most productive returning wide receivers are Dee Anderson and Russell Gage, who combined to catch 9 passes for 135 yards and 1 touchdown in 2016.