Victoria Richman / The Daily Gamecock

Minor setback for major comeback: Deebo Samuel’s 2018 return

South Carolina star wide receiver Deebo Samuel announced via Twitter that he will return to the Gamecocks for his senior season in 2018.

“GAMECOCKS COUNTRY we got one more ride and it’s going to be one to remember,” Samuel Tweeted on Sunday. “I love you all.. I’ll be back 2018 to give you the summary!!”

Samuel has dealt with injuries throughout his career at South Carolina, playing in only 18 games over the past three seasons. A hamstring injury caused him to only see action in five games his freshman year, and a recurrence of the injury sidelined him in 2016 for three games.

Samuel broke a bone in his left leg during the third quarter of a 23-13 loss to Kentucky on Sept. 16. There was a chance Samuel could've returned towards the end of the season, but he suffered a sprained foot last week while rehabilitating his original injury and will not play again this season.

Gamecock fans are saddened that Samuel will be unable to aid the team facing Florida, Clemson or in their bowl game, but are excited for the return of a wide receiver of NFL caliber.

Through the three games, Samuel recorded 250 receiving yards, three receiving touchdowns, two kickoff returns for touchdowns and a rushing touchdown. Even with limited time on the season, Samuel still leads the team in touchdowns, and his 474 all-purpose yards were not surpassed until the Gamecocks' game against Georgia last week.

In his Twitter post, Samuel seemed optimistic about returning after this year's season-ending injury.

“I write this with my head held high now with a smile on my face cause I’m coming back and I’m coming back better than ever with so much passion and fire in my soul,” he said.

South Carolina head coach Will Muschamp said he knew about Samuel's announcement on Sunday, but wanted to let the player announce his own news.

“Obviously, we’re excited," Muschamp said. "I think it says a lot about our program to have guys like Bryson Allen-Williams and Deebo Samuel — guys that are excited about coming back to South Carolina. They see what we’re building, they see what’s happening and they see the support that we have and they want to be Gamecocks. That’s exciting."

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