Greg Bryant, the 21-year-old former Notre Dame running back working toward a comeback with the UAB Blazers, has died of gunshot wounds he suffered while driving in south Florida early Saturday morning. West Palm Beach police said Bryant was declared braindead Sunday afternoon, and are treating his death as a homicide.
His condition was dire from the moment he was found at 4:45 a.m. in a car off I-95 in Palm Beach County, but UAB and many media outlets (including this one) walked back midday reports that he had died. “We remain steadfast as a Blazer family in our prayers and support for Greg and his family at this difficult time,” head coach Bill Clark said in a statement when he learned Bryant was hanging on. This weekend has seen a ton of sympathetic outpouring for Bryant on social media.
Bryant was ESPN’s No. 2 running back in the country coming out of American Heritage in Palm Beach County in 2013. His short career at Notre Dame ended when his grades faltered. He went back to Florida, struggled for a year to get cleared to play junior college ball, and had been getting ready to for another crack at college ball with UAB this spring.
The program, gearing up for 2017 after a three-year hiatus, needed players willing to start at the bottom, and luckily for them, a one-time marquee recruit was already there, waiting for the chance. He told Bleacher Report earlier this year that even getting a chance to earn a degree was “a dream come true.”