Notre Dame Enters Shepard Sweepstakes

Russell Shepard has received a few hand-written letters from Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis. The five-star quarterback from Houston, Texas got a different kind of letter from the Irish coach last week.

A scholarship offer.

"My coach said they were looking at me and they offered," Russell Shepard said. "I've been offered by every big program, so I don't know when they did but I know they have."

Ranked as the top player in the state of Texas by, the Cypress Ridge High standout has between 30 to 35 offers. He spent this past weekend at LSU, and would like to verbally commit somewhere by August or September.

"There are only two programs in the country that I would go to if I wanted to play a receiver-type position, and they would be USC and Notre Dame," Shepard said. "My choice is wide open right now, I'm still trying to narrow them down. Notre Dame is still on my list. I haven't exed them out or anything.

"They have the great tradition. Not too many schools can compete with that tradition. Besides this year, they have a winning tradition. They have an amazing coach and coaches on the coaching staff. I'm real impressed with coach Weis. I know they put players in the NFL."

This past season, Shepard passed for 794 yards and seven touchdowns. A dangerous runner, he gained 1,525 yards, and found the end zone 18 times. Nearly every school recruiting Shepard tells him he has a chance to play quarterback. He is not sure what Notre Dame has planned for him.

"It's important to me," Shepard said of getting a shot at quarterback. "I've talked to USC, I haven't talked to anyone at Notre Dame yet, and USC said they would bring me in as a quarterback and let me compete against people like (Mark) Sanchez and Matt Barkley, and if I'm the best dude, I can be the quarterback. But I would accept going to those two schools going straight to the skill position. They both run pro-style offenses so I'd be ready for the next level, especially at the receiver position."

Shepard hopes to catch up with a Notre Dame coach this week, and is trying to figure out what schools he wants to take trips to. He has never been up to South Bend.

"Right now I'm narrowing down the schools I want to visit," Shepard explained. "I have two schools I want to visit, Michigan and Florida, I know I'm going to see those schools for sure. I'm looking for two to three more schools I definitely could go see.

"(Notre Dame) is going to be a school that I want to see, and see if it's really how people say it is." Top Stories