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LSU WR Russell Shepard suspended, will miss opener

August 26, 2011

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— LSU receiver Russell Shepard has been suspended for the season opener against Oregon on Sept. 3 and is expected to miss a number of games while the university seeks his reinstatement.

LSU, which announced the suspension Thursday, said Shepard violated university and NCAA codes by discussing an NCAA inquiry with a teammate who was scheduled to be interviewed about the same matter.

The inquiry involves the NCAA’s probe of LSU’s relationship with scouting service owner and purported street agent Willie Lyles, a person familiar with the situation said. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because LSU has not announced what the inquiry entailed.

The NCAA has been looking into Lyles’ dealings with a number of college programs, including Oregon.

LSU has acknowledged doing business with Lyles’ Complete Scouting Services, but has said it only purchased videos and notes on junior college and high school prospects, which is permitted by the NCAA.

LSU said it paid $6,000 for the materials last December, and has cooperated with the NCAA probe.

Shepard will be allowed to continue practicing with the team while awaiting re-instatement, but it was not clear how many games he would be forced to miss.

The junior was expected to start at wide receiver this season and even participated in a scrimmage on Tuesday, after which coach Les Miles said Shepard was one of the top performing receivers that day.

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