Photo by J. Alan Paul Photography
After ending the season with a loss for the first time since 2010, the 2017 North Dakota State football team was on a mission to reclaim its throne atop the FCS. With a dominating start in the nonconference schedule to the grind of the Missouri Valley Football Conference gauntlet to another home stretch in the playoffs, the Bison provided a trip back to Frisco, Texas, that the players, coaches and fans will never forget.
Darrius Shepherd tells us all about his reaction from another trip back to Frisco.
Position: Wide Receiver
Stats: 41 catches, 559 yards, 1 TD
Could you tell you had the look you guys wanted on your touchdown catch?
“Lining up, they had a little trouble getting lined up to it. We could tell it could be a big play. We executed it like we did in practice, and it worked out really well.”
Did it feel like a long time coming to get your first touchdown of the season?
“Yeah, it had been a while. This was an unusual season. But it came at the right time and it was awesome to experience that in the championship game.”
What was it like battling against the JMU cornerbacks?
“They have some really good players. You play football to have those 1-on-1 matchups throughout the game. I had a blast playing against those guys because they’re really good competitors.”
“He has added a lot of wrinkles that will make this team really explosive. He brings some new looks that will help us have success against other teams this year. We’re really excited about it.” – Darrius Shepherd on Courtney Messingham, “Stepping Up On The Outside”
How did you guys keep the confidence high during that second half?
“Being in a championship game and being the two final teams in the nation, we knew we would have some adversity. We kept believing in our defense to get stops and we knew we had to keep chugging along to crack a big play or put together a good drive. We just had to keep believing in ourselves.”
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