• John Macon Gillespie

Catching Up With Urriah Shephard

Houston is a blue collar town and their football program embodies that. So the Topper quarterback must also represent that.

Senior Urriah Shephard is the ideal representative for his team. He’s tough enough to play quarterback, as well as linebacker and safety on defense. However, his 760-plus passing yards and 1,000 yards rushing this season have proven his immense value on the offensive side.

I caught up with the talented signal caller this week, on the heels of a big matchup against division foe South Pontotoc.

SES: So give me your impressions of the season so far. You guys are 4-3, with some big wins, and have posted some impressive numbers, including a shutout last week.

Shephard: I think the season has been one to remember. Like you said, we have put up a lot of numbers, but we’ve also been humbled after that Choctaw loss. But I think it has been a good one.

SES: How can you guys use that loss to Choctaw County?

Shephard: By not getting down on ourselves, but letting it refuel and remind us to never get complacent and always step on that field ready to do damage.

SES: It appeared you guys really put it together in a 34-0 win over Hatley last week. What is it that’s turning for you guys and helping y’all get closer to your best?

Shephard: Well, actually, as a team, we were upset with the way we played against Hatley. We didn’t reach the standards we know we can play up to. I think with all of us knowing that, I believe that itself helps us to become even closer to our best.

SES: A lot of your teammates play on both sides of the ball. But you play quarterback, in addition to responsibilities on defense. So what’s it been like managing that?

Shephard: It has been normal for me because I can play anywhere on the field. But I just do a little extra during practice so I can be in the best shape to play both sides on Friday.

SES: Does playing quarterback, and understanding what an offense is trying to do, help you on defense?

Shephard: It does, especially in the secondary.

SES: You’re already at 1,000 yards on the ground this season. All in all, you’re putting together a great senior season. What have you been able to do better this season?

Shephard: I have been able to do a lot this year. Honestly, I didn’t know about the thousand yards rushing, but all the credit goes to my o-line. They’re outstanding from practice to the game. They are the heart and soul of the offense.

SES: You guys have beaten some good teams already this year, but another comes to town this week. What do you see from this 7-1 South Pontotoc team?

Shephard: I just see another team in the way of our goal.

SES: What’s one song you would listen to just before kickoff if you could and why?

Shephard: Meek Mil 1942 flow, or a little Drake, too.

SES: What’s something most people would be surprised to know about you?

Shephard: I always wanted to play left tackle.

#Houston #JohnLukeMcCord

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