Notre Dame running back Greg Bryant suspended four games

Mike Vorel
South Bend Tribune

Notre Dame's depth at the running back position just took a hit.

Greg Bryant — a 5-foot-10, 205-pound junior — has been suspended for the first four games of the 2015 season for a violation of team rules, according to a university source.

Fox Sports and 247 Sports were the first to report the suspension.

Bryant remains in school and is able to participate in team activities, including OTAs and informal workouts, in the meantime. 

The first two seasons of Bryant's Notre Dame career have failed to live up to lofty expectations, as the Delray Beach, Fla., native arrived with five-star hype but has largely been overshadowed by fellow junior Tarean Folston. Bryant has rushed for just 303 yards and three touchdowns in 15 games, failing to make a start.

Now, it seems that slump will continue into his junior campaign.

Without Bryant, Notre Dame will lean more heavily on running backs Folston, converted wide receiver C.J. Prosise and freshmen Dexter Williams and Josh Adams. Possessing perhaps the strongest offensive line of the Brian Kelly era, the Irish's starting running back — whoever that is — should find plenty of open holes on the ground this fall.

Bryant also returned eight punts for 94 yards last season, making a valuable contribution on special teams. His absence will be felt in more places than the backfield early this fall.

At American Heritage High School, Bryant rushed for 1,447 yards and 17 TDs on 186 attempts as senior in 2012, earning a five-star rating by Rivals. He was also listed by Rivals as the No. 3 running back and No. 19 overall prospect in the 2013 class. Likewise, Bryant settled at No. 15 in Tom Lemming's top 100 list and No. 22 in the ESPN 300.

Through two seasons in South Bend, Bryant has yet to justify those rankings.

Notre Dame's Greg Bryant (1) is taken down by Te'von Coney (4) during the Blue and Gold Game Saturday April 18, 2015, in South Bend. SBT Photo/BECKY MALEWITZ
Notre Dame's Everett Golson (5) runs the ball while Greg Bryant (1) blocks Max Redfield (10) during the Blue and Gold Game Saturday April 18, 2015, in South Bend. SBT Photo/BECKY MALEWITZ
Notre Dame’s Greg Bryant (1) runs Saturday, April 11, 2015, at Notre Dame spring football practice at LaBar Practice Complex in South Bend. SBT Photo/GREG SWIERCZ
Notre Dame's Greg Bryant, left, during practice on Wednesday, March 18, 2015, inside the Loftus Sports Center at Notre Dame in South Bend. SBT Photo/ROBERT FRANKLIN
Notre Dame’s Greg Bryant runs the ball during the Notre Dame-USC football game on Saturday, Nov. 29, 2014, at the L.A. Coliseum in Los Angeles, Calif. SBT Photo/ROBERT FRANKLIN