Starting all four years on the team’s offensive line, Cailen Shepherd helped build the Seymour football program back up during his high school career.
Shepherd, listed at 6-foot-3, 230-pounds, will continue to bully defenses after graduation.
On Monday, Shepherd signed his letter to play football at Wabash College.
“I think he fits in great with their program,” Seymour assistant coach Brice Darling said. “It’s a proud program, as far as wins and tradition goes. He’s very athletic and motivated in the weight room and the school. He has a great frame and great feet. He has played here since his freshman year. He’s one of the building blocks of where we are today as a program.”
For Shepherd, the college choice came naturally.
“The recruiting process was actually pretty easy,” Shepherd said. “I narrowed it down because it was the best financially and I really liked the school. I’m looking forward to going up and playing against DePauw. (Teammate) Evens (Cribs) is going there, and that’s a big rivalry. Going against Evens will be really cool.”
Playing tackle, Shepherd helped the Owls’ offense average 249 yards rushing and more than 31 points per game in 2016.
Shepherd said he was off and on about playing at the next level, but couldn’t walk away after his final game with the Owls.
The Little Giants, who play in the NCAA Division III North Coast Athletic Conference, finished 8-2 last season.
At Seymour, Shepherd played every position on the line through four years.
Darling said that Shepherd’s athleticism allows coaches to move him around.
“Where he plays all depends on their offensive scheme,” Darling said. “I think he will eventually put on 30 or 40 more pounds. In our system, he fit best as a tackle. That’s where we put our most athletic linemen.
“His freshman year he played center and guard, his sophomore and junior years he was all over the place and his senior year he was a tackle.”
Shepherd said he plans on studying computer engineering.
“I’m really looking forward to going up and playing at Wabash,” Shepherd said. “My dad went there, but didn’t play. He liked it so I thought I would give it a try.”
Cailen’s twin brother, Coby, signed to play football at Hanover College in April.