#45 Marquel Bryant
Position: Defensive End
Previous College: None
Status: On Scholarship
Marquel Bryant (b. Oct. 29, 1992) is a bit of a project, mind you, but one with a very promising upside, which any informed observer would expect from a cousin of Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant.
At just 215 pounds, Bryant clearly wasn't close to ready to play defensive end at the Division I level when we signed him, especially not in the Big 12, but the promise of that position is what secured his signature for the Cats.
Everyone else wanted to him play at linebacker. But don't be fooled by his size. He's a natural pass rusher.
Bryant simply needed to live in the weight room for his entire first season. The fruit of that labor is that he now checks in approximately at his target weight of 240 pounds.
Adam Davis and Meshak Williams are locked in as starters, but we need relief players behind them, as well as younger guys to learn the ropes so they can take over for those two next season.
Ryan Mueller is our only other proven defensive end, but he mostly played inside the line in passing situations last season. Alauna Finau is an incoming JUCO and they're always a tossup. Laton Dowling hasn't proven much.
The opportunity is wide open for Bryant to step into the two-deep as a redshirt freshman. Now let's see if he does.