NCAA

The Tragic Death of Notre Dame and UAB RB Greg Bryant

Nearly five years after his final college football game, Greg Bryant’s legacy lives on in South Florida.

Bryant, an explosive running back, began his college career at Notre Dame. After a year in the junior college ranks, Bryant expected to restart his football dreams at UAB in 2016.

Bryant never got that chance, though. Unfortunately, he was tragically murdered days before he returned to UAB from a trip home.

This is Bryant’s story.

Greg Bryant began his college career at Notre Dame

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Greg Bryant arrived at Notre Dame as one of the nation’s top running back prospects.

247 Sports listed Bryant, who played at American Heritage-Delray in Delray Beach, Fla., as the nation’s sixth-best running back prospect in the class of 2013.

247 Sports ranked Bryant the country’s 45th-best player, based on a composite score, and the state of Florida’s 11th-best player regardless of position.

Derrick Henry, the future Heisman Trophy-winning running back and current star for the Tennessee Titans, would have easily topped the running backs list had he been listed as one. Recruiting outlets instead listed Henry as an athlete.

Bryant had 14 yards on three carries in 2013. A year later, Bryant ran for 289 yards and three touchdowns on 5.4 yards per attempt. He also turned five catches into 50 yards.

Bryant transferred to ASA Miami, a junior college, in 2015.

Bryant was tragically killed in May 2016

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In the spring of 2016, Greg Bryant had plenty to be happy about.

After a trip home for Mother’s Day, Bryant intended to fly home to UAB. Although the Blazers weren’t playing in 2016 after a hiatus, UAB would return to play in 2017 and Bryant wouldn’t lose a year of eligibility.

Bryant never got that chance, though. According to the Palm Beach Post (Fla.), an unidentified assailant pulled up to Bryant’s vehicle on southbound Interstate 95 and fired several shots, killing the 21-year-old. 

The driver, Maurice Grover, was shot in the hands but survived. 

Bryant and Grover were returning from attending a musical performance in nearby West Palm Beach. Bryant was taken to a hospital in critical conditions after sustaining multiple gunshot wounds, including at least one to the head. 

West Palm Beach police announced Bryant was brain-dead within 24 hours of the shooting. 

Greg Bryant left a lasting legacy on his football community

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Greg Bryant left a tremendous legacy on the South Florida football community. 

American Heritage, Bryant’s alma mater, retired Bryant’s No. 4. Buffalo Bills running back Devin Singletary, who stayed close to home and played at Florida Atlantic, was a freshman in high school when Bryant was a senior.

Singletary told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel in April 2019 that he dedicated his career to Bryant.

“That was my big brother. Before every game, I say my prayer. I ask my grandmother to watch over me, and then I ask GB to play through me. I know if he was still here, he would still be in the league.”

Singletary had an impressive rookie season for the Bills. The shifty running back totaled 385 yards and a touchdown on 4.1 yards per carry in the Bills’ first eight games.

When UAB played in the 2018 Boca Raton Bowl, they honored Bryant’s father, Greg Sr., with a jersey featuring Bryant’s No. 4.

“Your son was taken from our program and this earth too soon and we couldn’t be more proud to honor him in his backyard,” the team wrote.

All rankings courtesy of 247 Sports.