August 10, 2009

DE Bryant focused on four

Columbus (Ohio) Brookhaven defensive end Derrick Bryant is one of the top remaining uncommitted prospects from the Buckeye State, and as such he has received plenty of attention from schools in the Big Ten.

However, it's starting to look more and more like Bryant will be attending a school in another conference. The 6-foot-4, 230-pound lineman appears to have narrowed his focus to four schools, at least for the time being, and he's setting up officials to those schools in the coming days.

"Oh yeah, I'm still in the process of scheduling them," Bryant said in reference to official visits. "I've scheduled one with UCLA already. That one's for September 5. I'm still in the process of scheduling visits with Oregon, North Carolina and Kentucky."

What is it about those schools that has Bryant's attention?

"They're just schools I've been in the most contact with," he said. "I've put the recruiting process in my dad's hands, basically. They've just really been pursuing me the most and showing me the most interest."

Not surprisingly, considering the list of schools he likes, Bryant does not believe location will be a big factor in his ultimate decision. He offered a bit more about what he likes about each school.

"I've talked to the coaches at UCLA and they've got really good coaches. They're down to earth and all really good guys, from coach (Todd) Howard to coach (Rick) Neuheisel and the defensive coordinator. I've pretty much talked to all of them. I feel like I can call them any time and talk about anything. They've talked about early playing time and I like their academics.

"With Kentucky it's a lot of the same stuff I like about UCLA. Their coaches are real good guys and real down to earth guys. I love that in coaches. They've got big plans for me. They've said they have a lot of playing time. I've talked to coach Joker Phillips, the guy who's gonna be their head coach in the future. He's a good guy and a good guy to talk to. He's a player's coach. I know they would treat me like family. They've got good academics, too.

"North Carolina's coaches have a lot of experience. I like their defensive line coach and their head coach. They've got a very good defensive line coach. They're on the upswing. It's one of those things where they're working their way up to the top and getting better every season. It would be good to be a part of that. Another thing I like is their academics.

"With Oregon I really like coach (Jerry) Azzinaro, the defensive line coach. He's a good guy and a tough, fiery coach. He's coached a lot of great defensive linemen, like Dwight Freeney. With Oregon it's just one of those things where they've got a lot of style. They have an attacking defense and they play with a lot of speed."

Bryant isn't one of those young men that seems to relish the spotlight. He said he wants to schedule all of those remaining officials for early in his school year so he can get his decision behind him.

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