Emery Bryant looks back on career at Point and looks forward to next steps
Published 10:44 am Saturday, December 30, 2023
Every football program needs players that can lay the foundation for the future. Few players have done more for Point’s foundation than Emery Bryant.
Bryant came to Point University straight out of high school, but he left to go to Kentucky State after just one year. After a year with Kentucky State, Bryant decided to come back to the Skyhawks.
Bryant made the decision to transfer back to Point University because he believed that Greg Forest’s offensive system was a better fit for his playstyle.
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When Bryant transferred away from Point, current head coach Trevor Zeiders was still the defensive coordinator. After taking over, Zeiders let the team take a vote on Bryant coming back. The team gave a resounding yes.
After returning to the Skyhawks in 2022, Bryant quickly burst onto the scene. Bryant finished with 1,208 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns in his first season back.
“I feel like I blended right in with the system,” Bryant said. “Greg Forest, his motto was to throw for 5,000 yards. That’s what really got me back here.”
This season with Point, everything seemed to click for Bryant. Bryant finished with 992 receiving yards, just eight yards shy of becoming the first Skyhawk to reach 1,000 receiving yards in a season.
Bryant impacted the game in more ways than one. Bryant finished the season with 1,526 all-purpose yards and 13 total touchdowns. Bryant also broke an AAC record for longest kickoff return when he broke free on a 94-yard kickoff return touchdown.
For those accomplishments, Bryant was named the AAC Return Specialist of the Year, and he was named First Team All-American.
“It’s really a surreal moment because I told myself I wanted to get All-American,” Bryant said. “In August, I took a picture on my phone of the All-American wall we have, promising myself I would get it. It was a real moment when I got it.”
The magical season for Bryant was not some overnight success, Bryant manifested the success with his work ethic.
Bryant made the film room and the weight room like second homes throughout the spring and summer.
“You’ve got to really make it a lifestyle,” Bryant said. “You have to go in and put in the hours. I was going there early, working out, getting some conditioning in and weight training, and then come back for actual practice. Then, I’ll go eat dinner, have meetings, and then I’ll go back to the office with the coaches and watch film.”
Now that his playing days at Point University are over, Bryant is looking toward the next step in his career. Bryant has his sights set on playing professional football, whether it be in the NFL or in other professional football leagues.
Bryant has a busy schedule leading up to the NFL Draft, with an All-Star game in Miami on the docket in January, training programs and combines leading up to the draft. Bryant is also going through the process of hiring an agent.
“I’m open to any opportunity to showcase my talent to get to where I want to be,” Bryant said.
At five-foot-nine, Bryant is undersized for a wide receiver. Bryant’s size will lead to some doubting his ability to play at the professional level, but he has grown accustomed to proving doubters wrong.
Coming out of high school, Bryant was being heavily recruited by Kennesaw State. The school decided against Bryant being on the team after his senior season due to his size. That moment and the other doubters have never deterred Bryant, instead, it has just motivated him more.
“They told me I was a great athlete, I was just too small,” Bryant said.
Beyond just people questioning his size, Bryant has always had an extra motivating factor. Bryant lost his cousin in sixth grade, and the two had always talked about playing at the next level. Since then, Bryant has dedicated his entire football career to his cousin.
“I really dedicated my football career to my cousin that passed away when I was [in the sixth grade], but being looked over really drove me a little further,” Bryant said. “We always talked about how we wanted to play football, make it to the league and be with each other all the time. I dedicated my career to him.”
Bryant did not spend the entirety of his college career at Point University, but he is a Skyhawk down to his core. Bryant credits Point for helping a better person and athlete.
“It’s been a big stepping stone in my life,” Bryant said. “When you have your last senior speech to the team, I told them ‘you might not like Point at all, you might not like it at first, but one thing I think y’all should do is let Point help you become a mature man because that’s what it helped me to do.”’