Some great news today as Jr. WR D.J. Chark has decided to return to LSU for his senior campaign:
Chark was waffling between taking his career to the next level and coming back to build his resume as a feature option in Matt Canada’s new look LSU offense. Today he finalized his decision to return.
This is huge news for an LSU offense that will be looking to continue to build upon the foundation built by Ensminger last season. LSU will lose a number of “starters” on offense, but more importantly a high number of significant contributors will return, now including Chark.
Last season Chark caught 29 passes for 466 yards and 3 TDs. He rushed the ball for an additional 12 times for 122 yards and 2 TDs. He should see a significant boost in those numbers as he crawls up the depth chart with the departure of Senior Travin Dural and possibly Jr. Malachi Dupre, who has still yet to make a decision on his NFL future.
As Billy detailed last week, the shovel options and jet sweep motion should become an integral piece in the LSU offense. Pittsburgh WR/return specialist Quadree Henderson carried the ball 60 times for 631 yards and 5 TDs last season. With respect to Henderson, imagine a chunk of those carries now in the hands of the imminently capable Chark, and his explosive speed.
Chark should prove to be a vicious all around threat to the LSU offense, not just in the running game but as a receiver and deep threat. He can legitimately take the top off the defense, as we saw here in the Citrus Bowl:
Most impressively, Chark isn’t a Bennie Brazzell deep threat or nothing type option. He’s shown the ability to make circus catches and fight for the football in the air. Considering how little receiving talent returns in the conference next season, it wouldn’t shock me to see him lead the conference in receiving yards.
This is great news for LSU and important, as they no longer have to turn to a bevy of talented but inexperienced WR options for 2017.