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College Football's 10 Most Explosive Receivers Returning for 2016

Who are the top big-play threats returning for 2016?

Having a wide receiver who has the ability to stretch the field and take the top off the defense is a must for passing attacks. These receivers have the unique ability to turn ordinary plays into paydirt and six points for the offense. They come in different shapes and sizes, but there are a few qualities each big-play receiver seems to possess - speed, acceleration and great hands. This spreadsheet below shows catches that went over 30, 40 and 50 yards in the 2015 season and these are the top big-play threats coming back this year. Without further ado, here are the most explosive receivers in college football.

 

CFB's 10 Most Explosive Receivers Returning for 2016

Name

30+

40+

50+

Total

Taywan Taylor (WKU)

16

11

8

35

Shelton Gibson (WVU)

13

9

6

28

Thomas Sperbeck (BSU)

14

8

4

26

JuJu Smith-Schuster (USC)

12

7

6

25

Nicholas Norris (WKU)

11

7

6

24

James Washington (OSU)

10

8

5

23

Calvin Ridley (UA)

9

8

6

23

Corey Davis (WMU)

11

7

5

23

Kenny Golladay (NIU)

11

7

3

21

Penny Hart (GSU)

11

7

3

21

 

Taywan Taylor, 6’1, 195 lbs., Western Kentucky

Averaged 17.2 yards per catch in 2015 and racked up 1,467 receiving yards, which was No. 3 nationally.

 

Shelton Gibson, 5’11, 195 lbs., West Virginia

Ranked No. 1 in Big 12 and No. 2 in NCAA for yards per catch with 25.97.

 

Thomas Sperbeck, 6’0, 180 lbs., Boise State

Set Boise State's single-season record for receiving yards (1,412) last fall.

 

Juju Smith-Schuster, 6’2, 215 lbs., Southern California

Racked up eight 100-yard games and had one of the best stiff-arms of all-time.

 

Nicholas Norris, 5’9, 175 lbs., Western Kentucky

Arguably the most versatile receiver in the group by earning six rushes for 63 yards and a touchdown.

 

James Washington, 6’0, 205 lbs., Oklahoma State

Led the country with four 70-plus yard receptions and ranked 10th nationally with 20.5 yards per catch.

 

Calvin Ridley, 6’1, 188 lbs., Alabama

Broke Amari Cooper’s freshman receiving yards record with 1,045.

 

Corey Davis, 6’3, 213 lbs., Western Michigan

Active leading receiver in FBS with 3,785 career yards.

 

Kenny Golladay, 6’4, 213 lbs., Northern Illinois  

Former FCS standout at North Dakota, Golladay was one of only 17 receivers to have a 70 catches, 1,000 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns last season.

 

Penny Hart, 5’8, 170 lbs., Georgia State

Freshman All-American and the Sun Belt Freshman of the Year as the leading receiver in the conference as only a true freshman.

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