"If we stay together and bond like we're supposed to I think we can win again," said Bryant. "Everybody just has to work hard and when it's time to perform we need to perform."
In the past two seasons – both ending in state championships – Dudley's defense has allowed an average of just over a touchdown a game while shutting out eight opponents. After going 13-3 in 2007, the Panthers went undefeated last season, including a victory over football powerhouse Richmond High, which won the NCHSAA 4AA Title.
Bryant has certainly done his part, and on film, his ability to play the game sticks out. The 6-foot, 215-pound linebacker started both years and is poised to have a big senior season after totaling 85 tackles, 13 tackles for a loss, eight QB pressures, seven sacks, and two interceptions in 2008.
"I make tackles," said Bryant. "I hustle and bring a lot of effort. I bring dedication... I keep my team up even if we're in a bad situation. I can't let them stay down even if we're losing."
The 6-foot, 215-pounder is hoping a big senior year can lead to more scholarship offers. He holds offers from Marshall and several smaller programs, but he continues to hear from high-major schools as well.
"Everything is going good with recruiting," Bryant stated. "I have an offer from Marshall. I'm hearing from them, Clemson, NC State, Louisville, and ECU. I also get mail from Maryland.
"I was supposed to go up to Marshall last month, but I didn't make it up there. I'm going to set up a time where I go for one of the games and stay up there for a little bit... look up around and view the campus."
Bryant attended camps at NC State and North Carolina, and says most schools are recruiting him to play weakside linebacker while others prefer him inside at middle linebacker. He has taken visits to schools with teammate and close friend David Amerson, one of the state's top prospects.
Currently an ACC program holds the edge for Bryant after multiple unofficial visits.
"[NC] State is my first school, then Clemson, Marshall, probably Louisville and Kentucky," he said. "With State, I've been up there so much, and I've got to hang with the football players a lot. With me and Dave hanging with the football players so much it, in a way, put a bond between all of us. They took us around the campus... just had a good time."
The Wolfpack is recruiting Bryant and indicated they will monitor his progress in 2009.
"I think I did good at the camp, but they haven't offered me yet," Bryant previous told Pack Pride. "They said they like me, but I think they want to see film on my first two games so I'm going to send that to them."
Don't expect a quick decision from Bryant. He wants to take official visits before making a commitment.
"It will probably be after the all-star games and New Year's so I can go on official visits and see the schools... see what I like," he said. "My major will be a big part of the decision for me... my major and being with the coaches and the team. You don't want to go to a team where you wouldn't get along with the players as well as at another school."
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