Saturday, December 29th, 2018

Clemson Defensive End Bryant Named Defensive MVP

Photo By: Photo by Bill Patterson/CBAA

Clemson defensive end Austin Bryant brought home the McKnight Trophy as the defensive of the 83rd Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic. Bryant helped lead the Tigers to a 30-3 victory over the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on Saturday night.

All eyes were on Bryant to step up on the Tigers’ defensive front, as star lineman Dexter Lawrence was suspended for the game. Bryant anchored a Clemson defense that held Notre Dame to only 248 total yards.

Bryant wreaked havoc against the Notre Dame offensive line. He recorded a team-high six tackles in the game, tying his personal season high. Three of those tackles were for a loss. The big day lifts the senior’s collegiate career totals to 125 tackles and 17 sacks with one game left to play.

Perhaps the most eye-opening series of the game came when Bryant notched back-to-back sacks in the third quarter. The consecutive sacks pushed the Irish back and they threw an interception on the succeeding play. Bryant’s two sacks on Saturday brought his season total to eight.

Despite NFL speculation, Bryant made the decision to return to Clemson for his senior year this season in hopes of another National Championship run. Bryant and the Tigers will now have a chance to do just that as they’re headed to Santa Clara for the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship game on Jan. 7.

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