In the aftermath of the now infamous phone call from “Tyler in Spartanburg” on his radio show Monday night, it did not take very long Tuesday for Clemson coach Dabo Swinney to veer away from previewing the Notre Dame game this Saturday to defending the quality of the program he has built.
Much as he did in responding to the Monday night call, Swinney pointed out to the assembled media all of the positives for his program over the last 13 years, and he reminded Clemson fans who are down on him over the 4-4 record of this season, that, in his opinion, this is a one-off and he’ll have the team back in the playoff picture next season.
Here are some of Swinney’s key comments:
- Feels Notre Dame is the most complete team they’ve played, experienced group, they have everything you need in a team, well coached, Clemson played awful up there last year.
- Have to stop the Notre Dame run, have to be gap sound, they should have beaten Ohio State, their quarterback, he’s a pro, smooth and poised, has seen him for “ten years now”, has a lot of respect for him, the game has slowed for him.
- Irish have excellent running backs and receivers, all starts up front and they are very good there with a lot of experience, physical on defense, veteran linebackers and up front, really good at corner.
- They (Clemson) lead the nation in fumbles, if they didn’t lead the nation in fumbles, they’d be 8-0, they are going to fight their butt off to finish as well as they can.
- Will Shipley is day to day
- Been a little inconsistent at right guard, that’s why Leigh was moved in at right guard last weekend and he did well. Really pleased with Miller and Sadler at tackles.
- This is a healthy tree that’s produced a lot of good fruit, but even healthy trees need to be pruned so it can grow back and produce even more fruit. They have not had real football adversity since 2010.
- They’ve having a bad year, but let’s not eat our own.
- Always said the fun is in the winning, so this is a good reset for everyone around here because winning has become more of a relief.
- Klubnik will be a superstar, he’s not right now, but he works his butt off, he’s got some things he needs to do better, wants fans to get behind him, he’s their “fricking” quarterback.
- Klubnik is their best chance to win, there’s no question about it, they’ve been in position to win every game.
- Their defense is good enough to have won it all this season.
- This is one of the greatest programs in the history of college football the last 12 years they have built, he is going to fight to get the program back to the standard, not going to let winning become a relief.