Dexter Lawrence has one message to those people who don’t believe he knew nothing about the performance enhancing drug, ostarine, that was found in his system after a mandatory drug test by the NCAA last week.
“I’m not that type of guy to put that in my body,” he said. “I don’t know what I would use it for. I’m young, I am still moving.”
Lawrence, along with freshman tight end Braden Galloway and reserve offensive tackle Zach Giella, tested positive for ostarine in small traces. The three are not allowed at the moment to play in the Cotton Bowl Classic against Notre Dame, unless their names are cleared from the B-sample test which is expected to be released later Thursday afternoon.
“Dex is the type of kid that you would want your daughter to marry one day,” defensive tackles coach Todd Bates said. “You want you son to be like him. He has all of those great characteristics and is a great teammate.
“You just hate to see something like this happen to him.”
Bates said the Tigers have been preparing all week not to have the 6-foot-5, 350-pound defensive tackle available. Instead, they have had senior Albert Huggins and sophomore Nyles Pinckney getting all the reps as they get set to try and slow down a well-balanced Notre Dame offense in the Cotton Bowl.
“Our mentality is next man up and he (Lawrence) has handled it well,” Bates said. “He is learning to live out one of the things that you learn when you come to Clemson, which is life is ninety-percent about how you respond.
“I think he has responded well, and the guys have rallied behind him. They will be ready to play. It has just been that way.”
Despite what the outside people think, it means a great deal to Lawrence that his coaches and teammates have his back.
“You just see how close this team is and Coach (Dabo) Swinney is a player’s coach,” the All-American said. “Coach Swinney is a player’s coach. He trusts me. He trusts all the guys. He listens to us and he knows I am not the type of guy to do anything like that or the other two guys are not the type of guys to do anything like that.
“It just does not make any sense. We are all trying to figure it out. We just don’t how it got there and where it came from.”