Greg Bryant (Running Back, 5'10" 210 pounds)The four-star prospect and 13th-ranked running back per FOXSportsNEXT.com was initially an Oklahoma pledge. A trip to South Bend in early December for the now must-see Irish Awards Banquet opened Bryant's eyes to life under the Golden Dome.
"(It was) just being around the coaches and seeing the campus and watching film with the guys and just being around all the commits that came up. And the awards ceremony really locked me in," he said. "It was like a three hour ceremony, I liked how they represented the seniors and everything."
"The biggest deciding factors were playing early, getting a good education, because their graduation rate is like 97 percent or something like that. That was a key factor for me," Bryant told recruiting reporter Amy Campbell.
"I'll be able to come in early, run the ball, catch it out of the backfield, go in the slot, get on the field and make plays."
Said FOXSportsNEXT.com national recruiting analyst Chad Simmons of Bryant:
"When he has the ball in his hands, he runs with patience, power, and quickness. He can take the ball and quickly hit the hole or he can take it, let the blocks develop, then hit that quick initial burst. He does not have that elite second gear in the open field, but the initial burst is there.
"One of the more impressive things about Bryant is how he moves laterally. He really can bounce from side to side, make a quick move to avoid defenders east or west, and he can make that guy miss in 1-on-1 situations. He is not really a true elusive guy in wide open space, but he can move very well laterally in or out of the trenches.
"He is a back that could be a good zone back because of his ability to see things and to cut back. He has a great feel for the position and he tends to fall forward when taken down.
"Overall, he is a back that will not have to leave the field. Like most backs coming out of high school, he will need to improve on his blocking, but he can run with power inside, he can be used on the edge, and he can catch the ball out of the backfield. It would be very surprising if he is not in the mix in 2013 in South Bend."
Fellow incoming Running Back prospects: Fellow four-star and Floridian, Tarean Folston.
Berk on Bryant: A true power running back who should give the Irish a player capable of gaining the tough yards in short yardage. With his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield, Bryant should be a true double threat allowing Brian Kelly the chance to tweak the offense a little more.
Dohn on Bryant: Bryant is a physical runner who breaks through arm tackles and is comfortable running between the tackles. He has very good vision and is not easily brought down by the first tackler. He needs to work on his "wiggle"but he has very good straight ahead speed and if he gets in the open, he will be hard to bring down.
O'Malley's Initial SlottingHe's not a burner, but there's not much else missing from Bryant's developable skill set for the college level. His compact gait is that of a natural running back, not an athlete attempting to play the position. He squares his shoulders, sees blocking patterns and potential tacklers developing in front of him, and runs through initial traffic with ease and little wasted motion.
Those characteristics add up to the top trait a running back can possess: he's hard to tackle, anywhere on the field. That alone will afford Bryant the chance to compete for a role in the 2013 Irish offense.
Quicker than fast and able to absorb contact while remaining balanced, Bryant shows a tendency to gather his feet a bit too much in space, taking short, choppy steps rather than one decisive plant and burst in the open field.
Though he shows good north-south tendency through scrimmage, Bryant looks to cut back a bit too much in the open field, likely because of his success rate doing so vs. high school defenses.
Bryant dominated his high school competition. If he can run with the same instinct and abandon in college, Irish fans will hear his name often in 2013.
Links of Note: Click the links below for more highlight reels and comprehensive recruitment information for Greg Bryant: