Arkansas' Williams to return for senior season

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Jonathan Williams wasn't quite ready to end his time at Arkansas.

The standout running back said Wednesday that he's returning for his senior season. He leads Arkansas (6-6) with 1,085 yards rushing this season.

Williams helped the Razorbacks rebound from a 3-9 record last year to reach their first bowl game in three seasons. He had said leading into Texas Bowl against Texas that he would wait until hearing back from the NFL on his draft prospects before deciding whether to leave school, and he wasted little time in making that decision.

"My faith, family and education are very important to me and all three played a major role in my decision," Williams said. "I have many goals that I want to pursue, on and off the field. Graduating from the University of Arkansas is very important to me, and I look forward to running through the 'A' again in 2015."

Williams and Arkansas' Alex Collins each topped the 1,000-yard rushing mark this season, the only teammates in major college football to do so during the regular season. The Texas native has 2,216 yards rushing in three seasons for the Razorbacks and was fourth in the Southeastern Conference in rushing this season.

Williams has 11 rushing touchdowns this season, including four in a 145-yard rushing effort in a blowout win over Texas Tech. He later added a career-best 153 yards rushing against Alabama-Birmingham.

Williams was a backup to current Kansas City Chiefs running back Knile Davis as a freshman in 2012. He had 900 yards rushing on 150 carries, a 6.0-yard average, last season while splitting time with Collins — a mark he topped this season in Arkansas coach Bret Bielema's second season.

"I'm always excited for players to chase NFL dreams," Bielema said. "For Jonathan, that meant another year of growth on and off the field and a degree to carry him through life. I'm excited to have him here for another year that will help take him to new heights."

The Texas Bowl is Monday night.

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