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Sunday, March 3, 2013
2015 DE talks Noles, home-state Bulldogs

By Kipp Adams

ATLANTA -- When Army All-American defensive end and No. 13 overall prospect Ray Drew signed with the University of Georgia in 2011, the Thomas County Central football team was left with some big shoes to fill. After a position switch last fall, the Yellow Jackets found a worthy replacement in 2015 defensive end Austin Bryant (Thomasville, Ga./Thomas County Central).

The 6-foot-3, 240-pound sophomore made 106 tackles, two forced fumbles and a pass broken up, and, looking back, the end of his competition for playing time under center looks like a blessing in disguise.

“I started my sophomore year at defensive end after I was going against Adam Choice for snaps at quarterback before,” Bryant said. “I liked playing quarterback but I like hitting people even more.”

Bryant admits he is close to his predecessor, who looks to have a breakout season in 2013 in Athens.

“I am close to Ray Drew’s parents and he took me in as his god-brother when he was in high school, so we have been close ever since,” Bryant said.

Two weeks ago Bryant got some good news.

“Florida State offered and I think that is a good starting point,” Bryant said. “I hope to keep working hard, getting better, and hopefully I can earn a few more.”

The rising junior admits he would love an opportunity to take over for Drew one more time.

“I grew up a Georgia Bulldogs fan and it would mean a whole lot to me to get an offer from my dream school,” Bryant said. “That would have a big effect on where I make my college decision.”

Bryant mentioned plans to visit Florida, Georgia and South Carolina this spring.