||Jasper HS, Jasper, TX|
Joseph Bryant, who is rated as the 33rd best defensive tackle prospect in the country by TheInsiders.com, already has a few official visits under his belt.
"I took two," Joseph said Sunday evening, "one to Penn State and the other to Texas A&M."
His official visit to Penn State was during the weekend of the game against Louisiana Tech. The Nittany Lions defeated the Bulldogs that Saturday (9/21) by a score of 49-17.
Although Joseph's family did not accompany him during his first trip to Penn State, his teammate, Jorrie Adams, did according to Joseph. Jorrie, a 6'7", 295 pound lineman, is ranked by TheInsiders.com as the 5th best offensive line prospect in the nation. There is a good chance the teammates could end up at the same school.
"That's what we plan on doing," Joseph said.
Why did Joseph decide to take an official visit to Penn State?
"Because I like Joe Paterno as a coach. I like his coaching style. When I got the opportunity, when he said he was interested in me taking a visit, I jumped on it, I just went up there.
"I had fun. I enjoyed myself."
Joseph and Jorrie roomed with Levi Brown and Jason Alford, both true freshmen defensive linemen at Penn State.
"I met Jimmy Kennedy and Larry Johnson. I got to chill and hang out with them. I met the quarterback. I met a bunch of players, I just can't remember all of their names."
As is always the case during an official visit, Bryant got the chance to sit down and talk with various members of the Penn State coaching staff.
"They told me I had a legitimate chance to play my first year, but if not, they'll teach me the system and redshirt me. They're losing three or four tackles and they said if I come in in shape and ready to learn the system, then I might have a good opportunity to get into the rotation."
The pair also took an official visit to Texas A&M on December 13.
"I liked both of them a lot. It's going to be a tough decision. The only thing different is that A&M is closer to home. Penn State's further away, but both of them have great qualities. I could see myself playing for both teams."
Joseph is unsure as to whether or not he would prefer to attend college close to home. He has two more visits planned.
"I'll probably go to OU (Oklahoma) and Arkansas. I believe I'm going to go to Arkansas on the 10th and OU on the 17th."
Is Jorrie going to go with him on those visits as well?
"I'm pretty sure he is."
Joseph does not claim a favorite at this time.
"I'm still open. I'm going to wait until I take all five [visits] and then I'll compare all of them and choose the one where I feel like I fit in, where I feel like I could be away for four to five years."
Penn State's Brian Norwood is recruiting Joseph.
Before talking with Joseph, LionNews got the chance to talk with Joseph's father.
"It's a toss up right now," his father said. "He said he may stay in state. He likes Penn State a lot, but Texas A&M is really giving him a run. Both of them are great schools.
"He met the coaches and he met Larry Johnson and his brother. They had a great time and he was real impressed with them. He's still talking about Coach Johnson and Coach Norwood too."
Mr. Bryant is not steering his son in any particular direction.
"I told him wherever he's comfortable. I'm just so proud of him, wherever he goes is fine with me, wherever."