Bryant won't return before Florida game

ATHENS – Peach County's A.J. Bryant doesn't think he'll come back for another football season at Georgia, but he hasn't completely ruled out that option.

Bryant, a senior wide receiver of the No. 12 Bulldogs, has been out since the second game of the season due to meniscus damage in his left knee and probably won't be able to return until the Oct. 27 Florida game.

Coach Mark Richt has offered Bryant the chance to take a medical redshirt and return to play next season.

"I'm still thinking about it, but right now I don't think I want to," Bryant said.

Bryant, who was one of the Bulldogs' most high-profile recruits in 2003, at the end of this school year with a degree in housing and consumer economics.

"Graduating has a lot to do with it," Bryant said. "I guess I just feel like I've been here a long time."

Schools don't apply for a medical redshirt until after the year is finished so Bryant doesn't have to make a decision until he's healthy.

"We want for him what he wants," Richt said. "He doesn't have to do it because we want him do. I said, ‘I want you to decide in your heart what you want to do and whatever you do, we'll back you up 100 percent.' There's no sense in making this decision now."

Bryant entered his senior season hoping to erase the memory of a disappointing first three years in which in totaled 22 catches for 393 yards and two touchdowns, but he was injured in the second game of the year while attempting to throw a pass on a trick play.

"At first, he was hurt as much emotionally as physically," Richt said. "He's coming back around to his true nature, which is an upbeat guy."

Bryant has not caught a pass this season.


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