Former Clemson running back C.J. Spiller thinks the 2018 Tigers can be scary, but they still have to go out and prove it.
Spiller was in Clemson Saturday hosting his seventh annual C.J. Spiller football camp at the Poe Indoor Practice Facility in Clemson. The former unanimous First-Team All-American at Clemson believes this year’s Tigers have the talent and leadership to win another national championship.
“They can be scary, but there is a lot of hard work that has to be put in,” he said. “Obviously, they look great on paper, but the thing that Coach (Dabo) Swinney does is he always reminds them that what they have done and what they have accomplished in the past, means nothing moving forward. You have to go out and prove it each and every year, and I think they do a great job of that.”
Clemson returns 17 starters this season, not counting its kicker and punter. The Tigers are coming off a 12-2 season in 2017, a year in which they won a third straight ACC Championship and advanced to the College Football Playoff for a third straight year.
However, what makes the Tigers so scary is the fact they return all four players on the defensive line—Clelin Ferrell, Dexter Lawrence, Christian Wilkins and Austin Bryant—on a defense that was second in the country last year in scoring defense and fourth in total defense. Clemson also ranked first nationally in sacks and third in tackles for loss.
“I am looking forward to it,” said Spiller, who still holds the ACC and Clemson record for all-purpose yards in a season. “I think they have a great opportunity right in front of them and that is what you want is an opportunity. It is all about the work that you put in.”
What’s Spiller’s No. 1 message to this year’s team?
“Don’t get caught up in the outside world,” he said. “Since (Swinney) has been here they don’t do that. They block out the outside noise and kind of go in and, I call them ‘horse blinders.” They put them on and just focus on the task at hand.
“I think we have another national championship in the making.”
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