How close have 2 SEC rivals made it with 4-star UGA target Markaviest Bryant?

Markaviest "Big Cat" Bryant is one of the biggest Georgia targets left in the Class of 2017.

“Big Cat” is now back in Georgia.

Markaviest “Big Cat” Bryant, the 4-star Georgia target from Crisp County High School, has just finished off back-to-back official visits to Arkansas and Auburn.

The 4-star DE prospect now has to figure out whether he will stay in-state or head to the SEC West to play college football. That process also includes a head-turning visit to LSU earlier this month.

Where do things stand at this time? Felton offered up a small glimpse about where things stand between the three finalists: Auburn, Georgia and LSU.

“It’s hard to tell what order,” Crisp County coach Shelton Felton told SEC Country’s Ben Wolk. “My thing is I didn’t want to pressure him too much. I wanted to give him time to process. But, my guess, I think it’s still Georgia with Auburn right in there.”

How tall is he? Bryant and his burst fade almost crest the doorway into the Crisp County High School weight room. (Jeff Sentell/AJC)

All the data is in. Now it will just be time to sort through all of the findings.

Felton said to expect that decision to come down on Monday. Felton added that he and Bryant will then inform the coaching staffs of his finalists later that day.

“We plan on making the decision Monday,” Felton said. “We’re going to shut down all communication with coaches. We’ll make the decision, and then there will be the announcement on Wednesday morning.”

The 6-foot-5, 230-pounder is rated as the nation’s No. 14 weak-side defensive end prospect in the Class of 2017. He’s rated as the nation’s No. 181 overall prospect.

Bryant has taken trips to SEC West rivals LSU and Auburn over the last two weekends. Those trips have definitely added to the intrigue about whether he’d maintain a slight lean to Georgia down the stretch of his college recruiting decision.

That top 3 sure sounded like either Auburn or Georgia. Did Felton think that LSU would have to overtake both Auburn and Georgia?

“I do,” Felton said. “Maybe. But then again, he had a great time at LSU, man. He likes (LSU coach Ed Orgeron). So LSU could be pushing in there, but if I think I’d still give the nod to Georgia.”

The four-star hybrid linebacker also has an impressive wingspan. (Jeff Sentell / AJC)
The 4-star hybrid linebacker also has an impressive wingspan. (Jeff Sentell / AJC)

Felton ticked off a few reasons why he felt the Bulldogs were still the team to beat.

He also answered what would be the ultimate reason he would bolt out-of-state to Auburn in the same vein that Brown did last year on National Signing Day.

“I think he has a chance at Auburn to come in right now and be a difference-maker in playing for Coach Garner,” Felton said. “Coach Steele (also made an impression with) the way he planned to use him in the scheme.”

LSU’s chance hinges on a great relationship with coach Ed Orgeron. Orgeron built that connection over the summer, but then things faded a bit after that.

He also struck up a tight relationship with LSU rising junior Arden Key. Key also left Georgia to play in the SEC. Key just set a new LSU single-season sack record last year.

Markaveist Bryant is rated as the nation's No 14 weak-side DE in the Class of 2017. (Jeff Sentell / AJC)
Markaviest Bryant is rated as the nation’s No 14 weak-side DE in the Class of 2017. (Jeff Sentell/AJC)

It is worth nothing that Bryant’s mother did not make the trip with him to Auburn this weekend.

“I think it hurts a little,” Felton said. “I really do. She just couldn’t make it. It’s hard for a single parent to get off every week. Auburn was just the victim where she couldn’t get off this weekend.”

 

 

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