Kenjon Barner returning to Oregon

Oregon running back Kenjon Barner thought about joining backfield mate and best buddy LaMichael James in the NFL draft, but instead he opted to step into James' big cleats and be the Ducks starter in 2012.

From the official release:

The 5-11, 195-pound Riverside, Calif., standout ranked as the Ducks’ second-leading rusher each of the past two seasons, running for 939 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2011 as a junior. Barner also caught 17 passes for 184 yards and three scores, including a 54-yard catch that resulted in a TD against Wisconsin in the 45-38 win in the 2012 Rose Bowl Game presented by VIZIO.

“This was a decision that wasn’t easy for me,” Barner said. “But after talking things over with my family and Coach (Gary) Campbell, as well as praying about it, I have decided that I will return to Oregon for my senior year.”

The multi-purpose back averaged 102.7 all-purpose yards in 12 of 14 games this season, eclipsing 100 yards on the ground in four games in 2011 and five times in his career.

He has rushed for 1,856 yards in his first three seasons at Oregon, standing 354 yards shy of equaling 10th on the school’s career rushing chart, has scored 26 touchdowns and broke the Ducks’ single-season record in kickoff return yards (1,020) in 2009.

From The Oregonian.

And Eugene Register-Guard, which notes that cornerback Cliff Harris also will join James in the NFL draft.