Rivals250 DE names top 10
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Class of 2015 Thomasville (Ga.) Thomas County Central and Rivals250 defensive end Austin Bryant has had a busy spring and is expecting plenty of visitors to be by his school in the coming weeks. However, he's already ready to start narrowing down his list.
In an exclusive interview with Rivals.com, Bryant, the country's No. 134 overall prospect, named his top 10 schools. Making the cut were Florida State, Florida, Clemson, Stanford, South Carolina, UCLA, Notre Dame, Texas A&M, Penn State and Ole Miss.
"I'm just getting ready to go into the spring and I kind of want to condense it down and get close to a decision during the summer," Bryant said. "So I wanted to get the ball rolling now."
Bryant said the plan is to announce a decision sometime in the early fall so he can focus on his senior season and preparing to play at the next level.
While he named a top 10, Bryant admitted that some schools are already in line to receive official visits, leaving the rest to vie for the fifth and final spot.
"For sure I want to take officials to Clemson, Stanford and UCLA," he said. "I'm bouncing between Notre Dame and Penn State for the fourth one and then I'm not sure about the fifth. I will be visiting Florida State for sure, but I don't want to use an official on them because it's so close to home."
The Seminoles are the closest to home and according to Bryant have also been the hottest on his trail as of late.
"Florida State is probably recruiting me the hardest right now of all of them," he said. "I like Coach (Sal) Sunseri, once Coach (Jeremy) Pruitt left he picked up as my recruiter and it's gotten even better. I went down for junior day and they made me feel like was a priority and he tells me how I can fit in and how they can make me a better player. Coach (Jimbo) Fisher tells me the same, too. How I'll fit in and how it's close to home and how I'll have the chance to play early."
Bryant shared his thoughts on the rest of the schools in line for visits this fall.
Clemson: "Of course my teammate Adam Choice [2014 Clemson signee] going there so that gives me someone that I know. I also have a good relationship with the defensive coaches. They're graduating six seniors, so there's a good possibility that I can play early and that's really appealing to me. I also think the town of Clemson is a great atmosphere for college football. It's almost like my hometown but it's far enough away without being too far."
Stanford: "Mainly it's the academics that's drawn me to them. A degree from Stanford you can get a job making six figures down the road so it's a win-win with football and academics. I'm trying to get out in the summer, June 18 or July 26 and then get back for a game in the fall."
UCLA: "I like Coach (Jeff) Ulbrich. We talk a lot every week and he just tells me how they can feature me in their defense from Day 1. He's a real cool guy and I have a really good relationship with him. He said I would be coming in with a chance to have the type of role that Anthony Barr had this past year. Doing a little bit of everything."
With several of the school's on his list far from home, Bryant said he his family in on board with whichever school he eventually chooses.
"My parents don't really care," he said. "They told me it's my decision so whatever I do I'll have their full support."
Bryant will host plenty of visitors during the spring evaluation period before scheduling a number of trips for the summer.
Woody Wommack is a Southeast Region football recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.
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