Dabo Swinney takes Spurrier's latest jab as compliment

Dabo Swinney celebrates after Clemson's 42-13 win over Wake Forest

Photo by Mark Crammer

Dabo Swinney celebrates after Clemson's 42-13 win over Wake Forest

Swinney responds to Spurrier's comments

Calls for 'backing off the ledge'

— Near the end of his weekly press conference Tuesday, Dabo Swinney was asked to respond to Steve Spurrier’s latest verbal barb – and he took the high road.

Sunday, Swinney was highly complementary of South Carolina tailback Marcus Lattimore on his weekly teleconference, saying Lattimore’s serious knee injury “took my breath away.”

“It just breaks my heart. I just hurt for him and his family and his teammates,” Swinney said. “He represents all the things college football should be about. I know him personally. He's a class, class young man. Always has been. So is his family. It's devastating because I know how hard he's worked.”

Monday, during a rally/birthday party for Lattimore in Columbia, Spurrier couldn’t resist taking a shot.

“A lot of quotes came across from the nation and I read one today from the head coach at our upstate school," Spurrier told a crowd estimated at 1,500. You know, that school that used to beat us a lot that doesn't beat us much any more, that one.

“Usually when that coach up there talks about South Carolina it's a bunch of garbage and a bunch of BS usually. But I have to agree with him on what he said the other day.”

Swinney said he was “embarrassed” for Spurrier on his weekly call-in show Monday, and elaborated when asked Tuesday.

“I think everyone needs to back off the ledge,” he said. “Personally, I think (Spurrier) was trying to pay me a compliment, he just took a roundabout way of getting there. It was like me telling my wife , ‘This dress looks great, you don’t look nearly as fat in it as you do in this dress. It was a compliment. That’s what he was trying to do. I do take it as a compliment that he’d use something I’d say to compliment one of his players.”

“I’ve sent up prayers for Lattimore. He’s a great young man, and football is a violent game. Injuries will happen. He’s a guy I know, I know his family and I meant exactly what I said. He’s a quality person, and I really believe if anyone can come back he will. I’m disappointed we won’t get a chance to compete against him.”

Breeland back: Swinney said sophomore starting cornerback Bashaud Breeland, who missed the Wake Forest win with an abdominal strain, is expected to return to practice Tuesday. He and fellow sophomore Garry Peters, who missed the second half at Wake with a back injury, are both listed as probable for Duke.

“We’re a little thin in the secondary (with juniors Martin Jenkins and Darius Robinson out for the season),” Swinney said. “Hopefully we’ll get Breeland back today. We’ll see where he is. We don’t have room for injuries in that respect.”

Consistent Connor: One of Swinney’s star pupils as Clemson’s wide receivers coach was Aaron Kelly, who finished his career in 2008 as the ACC’s all-time receptions leader. Four years later that mark has been broken by Duke senior Connor Vernon, who passed Kelly early this month.

Vernon has 57 receptions on the season – one behind Clemson junior DeAndre Hopkins – as well as 761 yards and five touchdowns.

“He’s a very good player, very smart,” Swinney said. “He’s a great route-runner with great hands, all the attributes that excellent wide receivers have. He competes hard, fights for the ball and is a good runner after the catch.

“(Duke) does a great job of using him, and he’s been very consistent throughout his career, been very well-coached and is playing in a good system. He’s had a lot of opportunities to make a lot of plays. To set that type of record, you have to be pretty consistent in finishing and he’s been a very good finisher.”

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Comments » 6

richardcd writes:

Spurrier seems to have a tough time complementing people. What he said about Dabo is about the best he can do. Give him a break. Dabo did.

33dtb writes:

From ALL accounts, Marcus Lattimore is a CLASS young man.

Dabo is also very classy.

Darth Visor, not so much.
But Dabo is right, just consider the source and move on.
Besides, Darth Visor is a school-yard bully that obviously now running scared. Karma is a real mother......

TankButton writes:

• Taken out of context, the Coach Spurrier's comments seem tacky and classless. the "tweet" that started all of this was quite irresponsible.

• If you watch the entire video and listen carefully, he is just having some good fun, while getting the crowd going. He compliments Coach Swinney for his kind words regarding Marcus Lattimore, at the young man's 21st birthday celebration.

• I am a devoted Clemson fan, alumnus, Tiger Band drummer (played at the National Championship) and a huge Dabo fan. But I really found The Old Ball Coaches comments humorous. Everybody needs to relax... it was just good, clean fun.

TUN writes:

Spurrier's recent comments from his remarks about Dabo to his silly Death Valley confusion and ignorance reveal a startling lack of discipline with regard to his own speech. He should know at his age the impact of his public statements and should be very careful in his choice of words. His carelessness and recklessness in his recent jabs and barbs against Clemson can be viewed on one level as just giving the South Carolina fans a little of what they crave (Clemson bashing--its the small man's syndrome. It's what every little man does to get recognized) or it may be viewed as a lack of discipline and something that people tend to do when they get older and don't care anymore what people think or who they offend. Spurrier should act his age and set an example of self-control and discipline in his speech especially for the players he coaches. Just think about the example he is setting for them. Through his actions (i.e. his careless speech) he is telling his players that they can be openly and publicly disrespectful to their opponents and can say whatever stupid thing pops into their head. Why should Spurrier's players control their behavior off the field when Spurrier himself doesn't control his own behavior? What a hypocrite the old ball sack is and he should know better as an old man. Shame on you old ball sack!!!!!!!!!!!

KIMOSAMI (Inactive) writes:

in response to TUN:

Spurrier's recent comments from his remarks about Dabo to his silly Death Valley confusion and ignorance reveal a startling lack of discipline with regard to his own speech. He should know at his age the impact of his public statements and should be very careful in his choice of words. His carelessness and recklessness in his recent jabs and barbs against Clemson can be viewed on one level as just giving the South Carolina fans a little of what they crave (Clemson bashing--its the small man's syndrome. It's what every little man does to get recognized) or it may be viewed as a lack of discipline and something that people tend to do when they get older and don't care anymore what people think or who they offend. Spurrier should act his age and set an example of self-control and discipline in his speech especially for the players he coaches. Just think about the example he is setting for them. Through his actions (i.e. his careless speech) he is telling his players that they can be openly and publicly disrespectful to their opponents and can say whatever stupid thing pops into their head. Why should Spurrier's players control their behavior off the field when Spurrier himself doesn't control his own behavior? What a hypocrite the old ball sack is and he should know better as an old man. Shame on you old ball sack!!!!!!!!!!!

Amen, brother!!! Your analysis just nailed the hail out of it.

scLameCockKILLA writes:

in response to KIMOSAMI:

Amen, brother!!! Your analysis just nailed the hail out of it.

Old ball sack ......i love that!

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