Kansas University defensive coordinator Dave Campo on Wednesday offered insight into sophomore JaCorey Shepherd’s recent work with the defense.
Shepherd, who tied for the team lead with three touchdown receptions as a true freshman, began the preseason competing for a second-string spot at S receiver. However, during the past couple of practices, the Mesquite, Texas, native has traded in his blue offensive jersey for a white one reserved for the defense.
“It’s not a permanent thing,” Campo said of Shepherd’s switch. “We’re trying to develop some depth at a lot of different positions. When you’ve got young guys as back-ups, you never know how things are gonna work out. We just wanted to get a good look at him.”
Three of the four cornerbacks listed behind starters Greg Brown and Tyler Patmon on the depth chart are newcomers, and several weeks back Campo talked in generalities about a couple of offensive players he thought might add something to the defense.
“He was definitely one of those guys,” Campo said of Shepherd. “He’s a very quick athlete. One thing with a corner is quick-twitch, the ability to plant and drive. He doesn’t know a lot right now about playing over there, but athletically he fits the mold of a guy that has a chance.”
An updated depth chart is expected to be released Tuesday, and whether Shepherd’s name appears at receiver or cornerback, Campo said his role was still a work in progress.
“He’s still playing some offense,” Campo said. “He’s both right now. The kid’s a good athlete.”
TV for KU
The Big 12 Conference on Wednesday announced broadcast assignments for the first three weeks of the season, and KU landed TV ties during each. The 6 p.m. season opener on Sept. 1 against South Dakota State will be shown on the Jayhawk IMG TV Network. KU’s 2:30 p.m. match-up with Rice on Sept. 8 will be shown nationally on Fox Sports Net, and the Big 12 opener at 11 a.m. on Sept. 15 against TCU will mark KU’s first appearance on FX.