Dabo Swinney says notion of Clowney or Watkins passing up junior seasons 'absurd'

The Clemson Sports Blog

Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd runs for a first down near South Carolina's Jadeveon Clowney during the first quarter at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia.

Photo by Ken Ruinard

Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd runs for a first down near South Carolina's Jadeveon Clowney during the first quarter at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia.

The question has been asked: what does Jadeveon Clowney have to gain by playing his junior season at South Carolina?

Everyone knows what he has to lose.

For many closely involved with both professional and college football, the question itself is offensive.

Count Dabo Swinney and Gil Brandt among them.

Brandt, a draft analyst with NFL.com who was formerly vice president for player personnel for the Dallas Cowboys, says the notion of hot prospects sitting out parts of their college careers to protect themselves from possible injuries is "the stupidest thing that I have ever heard of in my life."

Swinney, when asked the question recently in the context of Clemson's own Sammy Watkins, who, like Clowney, is projected as a 2014 NFL first-rounder, had much the same reaction.

"I think that's absurd," Swinney said. "But in the day we live in now, I don't have any doubt that we'll see that at some point. But to me, it's absurd, and it totally discounts the game and the thrill of competition, what it's all about, and team. At the end of the day, it's about team.

"I don't think you'll see many guys that will go that route. But there will be somebody, somewhere along the way...This has become a 'me' society. That's unfortunate, but that's the way it is."

Swinney got to know South Carolina's star defensive end well enough during the recruiting process to even entertain the notion of Clowney passing up his junior season to avoid injury.

"I can tell you one thing: I don't see any way that Clowney's not going to be on the field, because that guy loves to compete and he likes to play for his team," Swinney said. "That's obvious to me from the way the guy plays. That's what you do. You're a college football player and you go play the game."

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Comments » 3

jarheadtiger writes:

Am waiting to see if Spurrier tries to make something negative out of what is clearly a compliment to one of his players, much like he did with Lattimore. For a guy that I respect so much as a coach, he can often seem rather petty in that regard. SMH

KIMOSAMI writes:

Yeah, jarhead, I was thinking the same thing. Spurrier seems to try to make an issue with anything in order to belittle a rival. Or not even a rival.

Spurrier has devolved into a bully. A dirty bully. He bullied Ron Morris of The State in front of other journalists. They shamed themselves by not walking out en masse. And I can't believe NOT ONE writer has called Spurrier out on it. Cowards.

Spurrier bullied a class act like Tennessee's Phil Fulmer. He even jeered Peyton Manning. He's done the same to Dabo on several occasions. I don't know if Spurrier's drunk when he does it, or what, but it is pretty dam ugly. And it's not befitting a major college football program....I don't care how many games he wins.

To their credit, all the above subjects of Spurrier's antics have handled the matter with dignity and class. Which pretty much tells you that maybe there is a bit of hate/spite/envy in Spurrier for a more classy individual. I don't know. But it is what it is.

Spurrier was treated badly by UF when he wanted to go back there after Washington didn't work out. (He even mouthed off to Jim Haslett during that time and was promptly silenced by Haslett, who, I understand, told Spurrier to keep his mouth shut or he would shut it for him).

Maybe they had tired of his mouth at UF and opted for the far, far, more dignified and classy Urban Myer.

TigerMarine writes:

He's a really good Xs and Os coach but he has to be to balance it out with his mouth. I will give it to him even if what he says makes no sense to anybody with an IQ over 80 the inbred redneck coot fans sure eat it up. He's nothing but a used car salesman to me.

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