Source: ND receiver Stepherson suspended four games

Published: Aug. 25, 2017 at 12:17 AM EDT
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Irish wide receiver Kevin Stepherson has been suspended the first four games of the season for a violation of team rules, a source inside the program tells NewsCenter 16's Alex Wilcox.

Stepherson will miss games against Temple, Georgia, at Boston College, and at Michigan State. The first game he will be eligible to return for is the home game against Miami (OH) on Sept. 30th.

Head Coach Brian Kelly said at his post-practice press conference Thursday evening that he "can neither confirm, nor deny," wide receiver Kevin Stepherson's status of being suspended for Notre Dame's season opener against Temple.

"The clearest picture I can give you is the consistent message I've been giving everyone is that we're not going to put you in a competitive situation or on the field based on your talent," said Kelly when asked about Stepherson's situation of not seeing much field time during camp.

"You've got to exhibit the traits that we're developing in our players and those traits are coming along, he's making progress," Kelly continued.

"But his attention to detail, his focus, all of the traits we require all of our players to have, he's working on and he's getting better. When he exhibits all of those traits, he will find himself on the field."

Stepherson was one of the five players arrested for possession of marijuana in August of last year, a class B misdemeanor.

In June, Stepherson was sentenced to one year probation. Charges will be dropped if he is able to stay out of trouble for that one year sentence.

As for the rest of the Irish football team, they're slowly counting down the days from their season opener.

With classes starting this week, the focus of practice has shifted over to Temple.

Kelly knows he needs to keep his guys dialed in and paying attention to keep preparing for the Owls next Saturday.

"We've had to have a couple of conversations about maintaining that focus," said Kelly. "They want to get out there and play somebody."

20 practices against each other, this, in my experience, is that period of time that you have to have a stern talking to the boys about playing nice together. Our kids want to hit somebody else."

Notre Dame and Temple will square off at Notre Dame Stadium on September 2nd at 3:30pm.