The wisdom of experience says that when it comes to quarterbacks “if you don't have one, you have none.”
Dabo Swinney isn't sure the old adage applies very well to Clemson's upcoming three-way battle to find a replacement for record-breaking quarterback Tajh Boyd.
As the Tigers begin offseason work today with all three candidates available and eager to show their stuff, Swinney says no options are off the table, including a scenario that includes playing more than one quarterback on a regular basis.
“I wouldn’t concede anything, but once you go through the whole situation, if you have a clear-cut starter, then that’s the way it is,” Swinney said during his post-season review on Saturday. “But if you don’t have a clear-cut starter and you’ve got two guys that bring different strengths and you need that combination to win...”
Duke coach David Cutcliffe employed just such a system this season while leading the Blue Devils to the ACC Coastal Division title and a national ranking.
“Duke played two different quarterbacks in different situations,” Swinney said. “Ideally, you’d like to have one guy that’s clear cut and obvious. But who knows? At the end of the day if you’ve got a couple of guys that can go win for you, I don’t have any problem with that.
“There’s just way too much to get settled before we can even think about that.”
This week's busy schedule includes the national coaches convention in Indianapolis, the reopening of active recruiting in the run-up to signing day, and the beginning of offseason strength and conditioning workouts.
Clemson will host prospects on official visits the next three weekends, as the coaching staff puts the finishing touch on what currently stands as an 18-man class. Of the 18, five players are already enrolled and will begin offseason work today – quarterback Deshaun Watson, wide receivers Artavis Scott, Demarre Kitt and Kyrin Priester, and linebacker Chris Register.
Watson is ranked as the nation's No. 1 quarterback by ESPN and 247Sports, while Priester is ranked No. 1 among prep school receivers. Both Kitt and Scott are ranked among the top 15 receivers nationally.