Shepard pickup huge for SDSU

The commitment of Winston Shepard to San Diego State is huge for the Aztecs. We breakdown what the commitment means for SDSU going forward.

The West Coast has been carried by schools such as San Diego State, UNLV, St. Mary's and Gonzaga in 2011-12 due to the job those four programs have done recruiting, developing and coaching.

The Aztecs have a young team that is already in the Top 15 despite primarily relying on several players who will be back next season.

Chase Tapley, Jamaal Franklin, Xavier Thames, James Rahon, Deshawn Stevens, Alec Williams and LaBradford Franklin all return to a squad that also will bring in transfers J.J. O'Brien, James Johnson and Dwayne Polee as well as incoming freshmen Matt Shrigley and Skylar Spencer.

On Thursday, San Diego State added a big piece to the puzzle for next season and the future.

6-foot-8, 200-pound Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep 2012 combo forward Winston Shepard has informed that he's committing to the Aztecs, which is big news for head coach Steve Fisher and company.

Shepard has consistently improved at Findlay Prep and has vaulted up the rankings. He now ranks as's 39th best prospect in 2012, but it's hard to sum up all the ways he impacts the game with a number.

The athletic senior is a very good rebounder, is a terrific defender that can guard the two through four, is a heady passer, a capable and improving scorer from midrange and in, but most of all a winner that does all the little things it takes for a team to win.

Almost any program in the country would ultimately find a key role for Shepard as he does too many things to help a team win to keep on the bench for long.

That program will be San Diego State, as the Aztecs beat out finalists that included New Mexico, Oklahoma State, Oregon, Saint John's, UNLV and UTEP for him.

As his senior season moved forward, many high major programs tried to get back involved with Shepard, but after officially visiting San Diego State at the beginning of February, he knew where he wanted to go to college.

With Shepard's commitment, the Aztecs are likely done with the 2012 recruiting class, but SDSU has cemented its standing as a school that will continue to be successful on the court in the coming years.

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