Oregon football: Royce Freeman returning for senior season

The Oregon football program shared some good news on Wednesday, announcing running back Royce Freeman will be returning to school for his senior season.

With another year in Eugene, Freeman will have an opportunity to surpass former Ducks star LaMichael James as the university’s all-time leader in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns.

In a statement, Freeman said a strong reason for his decision to return was the vision and energy of new head coach Willie Taggart.

Royce Freeman returning for senior season. https://t.co/XWgspWSxbO #GoDucks pic.twitter.com/eUZ6DfRd3L

— Oregon Football (@oregonfootball) December 21, 2016

“After consulting with my family and giving this considerable thought, I feel this is the best decision for me in regards to my future on and off the field,” Freeman said in a statement on the school’s official website. “My education was one of the most important reasons I chose to come to Oregon and that priority hasn’t changed.

“I wish to thank Coach (Mark) Helfrich and the entire coaching staff for the roles they have played in my success thus far. I am extremely grateful to Coach (Gary) Campbell for everything he has taught me and the influence he has had in my life over the last three years.

“However, the prospect of playing for Coach (Willie) Taggart my final year here was certainly a factor in my return. His enthusiasm and vision for this program are contagious. I am excited to be coached by him and to enhance my development.

“All praise to the most high; and Go Ducks.”

Injuries limited Freeman’s junior campaign, as he totaled just 945 yards and nine touchdowns on 168 carries. Throughout his career, Freeman has recorded 4,146 yards and 44 scores on the ground.

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Photo Credit: Oregon Football