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Notre Dame Football: Wide Receiver Javon McKinley still might return for 2020 season

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There’s no official word yet

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 26 Notre Dame at Michigan Photo by Steven King/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

According to a report from the South Bend Tribune’s Tyler James, wide receiver Javon McKinley might still return to play football for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish in 2020. McKinley has a fifth year of eligibility in his pocket, but it’s been a little bit of a mystery as to what will happen with him.

In the report, it states that McKinley wants to return to Notre Dame. This is in opposition to what was a little bit of groupthink that Javon was just done with football altogether — like he wasn’t even going to use his graduate transfer option.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 14 New Mexico at Notre Dame

While McKinley came to South Bend as a highly rated recruit, he hasn’t turned that HS ranking into production on the field. Injuries have been partially to blame for McKinley’s lack of time on the field. Even as he saw more and more time in 2019, by the time the Duke game came around, Javon was sidelined for the remainder of the season because of injury.

McKinley pulled in 11 receptions for 268 yards and 4 touchdowns in 2019, and has the peculiar state of being the team’s leading receiver against Michigan with 2 receptions for 42 yards and a TD.

If McKinley does in fact return to Notre Dame in 2020, he would be Notre Dame’s most productive returning receiver from 2019. The Irish added Bennett Skowronek as a transfer from Northwestern to help add experience and production to a group that lacks both — although loaded with talent and potential.

I don’t think numbers are too much of an issue right now either. Notre Dame is only sitting three over the 85 limit, and there will be attrition one way or the other this spring and summer.

2020 Notre Dame Football Scholarship Chart

Position / Year Freshmen Sophomore Junior Senior 5th Year
Position / Year Freshmen Sophomore Junior Senior 5th Year
Quarterback Drew Pyne Brendon Clark* - - Ian Book
Running Back Chris Tyree Kyren Williams* Jahmir Smith*, C'Bo Flemister* Jafar Armstrong*, Avery Davis* -
Tight End Michael Mayer, Kevin Bauman - George Takacs*, Tommy Tremble* Brock Wright -
Wide Receiver Jordan Johnson, Jay Brunelle, Xavier Watts Kendall Abdur-Rahman* Micah Jones*, Kevin Austin*, Braden Lenzy*, Lawrence Keys III*, Joe Wilkins* Javon McKinley, Bennett Skowronek
Center - Zeke Correll* Jarrett Patterson* - -
Guard - Hunter Spears* John Dirksen* Dillan Gibbons*, Aaron Banks* Tommy Kraemer, Colin Grunhard
Tackle Tosh Baker, Michael Carmody Andrew Kristofic*, Quinn Carroll* - Robert Hainsey, Josh Lugg* Liam Eichenberg
Defensive Tackle Aidan Keanaaina, Rylie Mills Howard Cross*, Jacob Lacey Jayson Ademilola, Ja'mion Franklin* Kurt Hinish, Myron Tagovailoa-Amosa -
Defensive End Alexander Ehrensberger, Jordan Botelho NaNa Osafo-Mensah*, Isaiah Foskey* Justin Ademilola*, Ovie Oghoufo* Kofi Wardlow* Ade Ogundeji, Daelin Hayes
Linebacker - Jack Kiser*, Osita Ekwonu*, Marist Liufau*, JD Bertrand* Bo Bauer, Jack Lamb*, Shayne Simon, Paul Moala Drew White*, Jordan Genmark Heath, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah* -
Safety - Litchfield Ajavon*, Kyle Hamilton D.J. Brown*, Houston Griffith Isaiah Pryor* -
Cornerback Clarance Lewis, Caleb Offord, Ramon Henderson K.J. Wallace*, Isaiah Rutherford*, Cam Hart*, TaRiq Bracy - Shaun Crawford**, Nick McCloud
Specialists Alex Peitsch (LS) Jay Bramblett - Jonathan Doerer -
Totals 17/85 (17) 38/85 (21) 60/85 (22) 75/85 (15) 85/85 (10)
*Eligible For 5th Year **Eligible For 6th Year