By Will Vandervort
If you were Dabo Swinney what would you want for Christmas?
I’m sure it would first start with a great day with his family. The Swinney Family is a very close unit. I don’t know if there is a family out there that has as much love and respect for each other than they do and it all starts with Coach Swinney and his wife, Kathleen.
The next would be a new contract with a hefty raise and a guarantee from the Clemson administration that he has their unwavering support for what he has already done at Clemson and what he wants to do in the future.
Trust me when I say this, Coach Swinney loves it here in Clemson and he would want nothing more than to stay here for a long time and more than likely for the rest of his career. But he also wants to feel appreciated like all of us do when we are with a company, and there is nothing wrong with that.
Next would be for his players to all arrive safely back to Clemson after spending the Holiday with their families. That is always the number one concern for a head football coach this time of year. By the way, the Tigers will leave for Miami after practice on Sunday morning.
Of course the best Christmas present Dabo Swinney and all of Clemson nation can ask for is a victory over Ohio State in the Discover Orange Bowl on Jan. 3. Like last year’s victory over LSU in the Chick-fil-A Bowl, a win over an Ohio State program that was in the national title hunt all season long would do wonders for the way the program is looked at around the country. It would again gain tremendous national respect, something it lost a little with losses to both Florida State and South Carolina.
A win also would send excitement through the Clemson family, something Clemson Nation definitely needs after losing to those pesky Gamecocks for a fifth straight season. Playing in the Discover Orange Bowl will bring Clemson a lot of national exposure that can be both good and bad.
It’s only good if the Tigers go out there that night and play the game of their lives and beat the Buckeyes. We all know what a loss in the Orange Bowl can do. It has been two years and Clemson has won 21 games and lost only four, but people on ESPN and other media outlets still bring up that 2012 Orange Bowl experience and that’s all I will say about that.
A win this time around will truly end all of that and will give Dabo Swinney a very, very Merry Christmas indeed.
Merry Christmas Clemson! I hope you all truly enjoy spending the Holiday Season with your family.