Pickerington (Ohio) North tight end Darien Bryant spent his spring break looking for the right fit for his college career. His travels paid off. The Maryland Terrapins came through with a scholarship offer Monday night, Bryant's first from a BCS school.
Bryant visited Maryland as well as Virginia, West Virginia, Toledo, and Michigan.
"I have been to Maryland before, but it was my first time there in awhile," Bryant said. "Watching the practice, seeing the way they use their tight end position was really good. I talked to coach [John] Donovan. He showed me their history with Maryland tight ends going to the NFL, and the way they use them in their offense."
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The next day, Bryant checked out Virginia's spring game.
"It was really good," Bryant said. "We sat in the coaches' meetings before the game, and then we got more time with the position coaches and saw how they talk to their players, and how they show plays on the projector. It was all about getting a feel for what it would be like if I went there. It was a good visit."
Bryant has strong connections to Morgantown, West Virginia and used his time off of school to briefly check in on the Mountaineers' program.
"Nothing much new really, I have so much family there and have gone to camps. I have been there a lot. It was not really a planned trip, but we were so close to campus because we were visiting family, that it made sense to go to practice and talk to the coaches a bit."
West Virginia was the first stop on Bryant's spring break tour. He then trekked north to see Toledo and Michigan. Toledo was his first scholarship offer.
"Michigan's visit was a little more brief because we wanted to visit Toledo as well," Bryant said. "The Michigan visit was really nice. It was my first time to Ann Arbor, and actually seeing that stadium in person compared the pictures I saw, it was bigger than I expected. I didn't go inside, but it looked new, big, and nice. Seeing their indoor facility was really nice too. With some of Michigan's stuff coming from West Virginia, I am a bit more familiar now with the Michigan program and those coaches than with other universities."
That familiarity stems from Bryant's connections to Morgantown and the West Virginia program.
"I don't really have any favorites at the moment. But I think I have always liked West Virginia. I was born there and have family there. But, whoever is interested in me, I will be even more interested in them. We'll see what happens."
Bryant said he is not sure where West Virginia stands with a potential offer.
"I won the MVP award at their camp last year," Bryant said. "I am pretty sure they are interested to some level. I just think they are not sure what position they would use me. That is what I am sensing from them."
Bryant said he visited Purdue and Vanderbilt earlier this year. He does not have any specific plans to visit more schools this Spring.