5-star Shepard Glad to be Back on Field

After a trying senior year in which Tee Shepard was ineligible and reports swirled about his commitment status to Notre Dame, everything seems calm again. The five-star cornerback played well in two all-star games and talked to IrishEyes.com about enrolling early at Notre Dame.

Tee Shepard missed his senior season because of a transfer issue with California's governing body for sports, but he didn't miss a beat.

The Notre Dame commit and Washington Union High (Fresno, Calif.) five-star cornerback had two interceptions in last month's Cal State All-star game, and then played well in the West's 17-14 win in Tuesday's inaugural Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl in Phoenix, Ariz.

"It was great. I was happy," Shepard said. "It feelt good. It was on national t.v. The best thing about that game was I played with our defense, and I led our defense and got everybody's phone number to talk to them, and I loved playing with the defensive line."

The game included fellow Notre Dame commits Deontay Greenberry, who is Shepard's cousin, Justin Ferguson, Mark Harrell, Ronnie Stanley and Sheldon Day.

"I talked to all of them," Shepard said. "It was great."

The games were the first for Shepard since his summer transfer from Central High East Campus (Fresno) to Washington Union. The move was made because of family reasons, and so Shepard could graduate early and enroll at Notre Dame in January.

However, the CIF ruled Shepard was ineligible, so his first game was the Cal State All-Star game the weekend before Christmas.

"I got two picks and took one to the house," the 6-foot, 180-pound Shepard said. "To be honest, I already knew what I was capable of. I could miss three years and still play well."

Shepard added he felt equally comfortable and in rhythm in the Semper Fi bowl.

"I felt like I played well," he said. "I felt like I am never going to lose my skills. I felt great. It wasn't a big surprise. The competition was actually better than high school. It was better, but it was the same with (covering). I was on top and batting balls down."

Shepard, who is rated Scout.com's No. 4 cornerback despite the lack of playing time, was also the first member of Notre Dame's class. He committed March 2, and despite making several official visits outside of his October trip to South Bend, Ind., he says he is solid with the Irish.

"I enroll at Notre Dame on Jan. 15," he said. "I'm going to continue to chill with my family until then."

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