USC receiver Gary Bryant Jr. expected to redshirt rest of 2022

One of USC’s top receivers from last season is now preparing to sit out the rest of this season.

Junior Gary Bryant Jr. is expected to take over the redshirt this season, USC coach Lincoln Riley said Tuesday. Bryant, who had caught just two passes in three weeks, can play in one more game while retaining his redshirt ability.

The decision to ditch Bryant for most of the rest of the season is a surprising turn of events for a receiver who has been one of the most prolific playmakers in USC’s passing attack in 2021. Bryant notched seven touchdowns and rushed for 579 yards on offense without a top goal, Drake London, for the second half of last season. He also served as one of USC’s top returns.

But with a new fleet of transferees welcomed in the off-season, Bryant’s opportunities have since dried up. The eight stretches he ran in last Saturday’s USC win over Fresno State marked a three-week high for the junior. He practiced offense Tuesday with the Trojans scout team.

Whether Bryant will choose to stay with USC beyond his redshirt year remains to be seen. He signed with the Trojans from Corona Centennial in 2020 as one of the nation’s most desirable receiver recruits. Should he decide to enter the NCAA transfer portal, he would likely have no shortage of applicants.

Less than a month ago, Bryant told reporters he welcomed the competition that has come with Riley’s offense and a crowded reception room

“Just going out there and taking it one day at a time and knowing I’m competing with myself,” Bryant said. “I’m just trying to get up. When I heard Jordan [Addison] came Mario [Williams] came just knowing that I can take over his game, he can take over my game, we can all come together as a unit and improve every day in training.

Addison and Williams have emerged as clear top targets in USC’s explosive passing attack, combining for 41 of the 91 goals in three games. No other recipient in the Trojan rotation was attacked more than seven times.

The lack of equal opportunities raises the question of whether Bryant will be the last in this room to get a redshirt — or drop out altogether.

Etc.

Left tackle Courtland Ford (ankle) was in full training Tuesday after missing USC’s win over Fresno State with an ankle injury. Both he and teammate Bobby Haskins come into this week with clean bills of health, but Riley wouldn’t say who would take the lion’s share of snaps against Oregon State on Saturday.

https://www.latimes.com/sports/usc/story/2022-09-20/usc-receiver-gary-bryant-jr-expected-to-redshirt-as-opportunities-dwindle-on-offense USC receiver Gary Bryant Jr. expected to redshirt rest of 2022

Emma Bowman

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