SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Dabo Swinney has done it again. Clemson has become National Champions for the second time in the past three years with a 44-16 victory over Alabama Monday night at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif.
Tuesday morning the Champions Press Conference was held with Swinney as well as quarterback Trevor Lawrence and cornerback Trayvon Mullen.
Swinney on if Clemson is a dynasty
“No, we’re a long way from a dynasty. We’re a great program. We’re a great program. There’s no doubt about that. We’re incredibly consistent in every area of our program. I mean, and that’s what I’m more proud of than anything is just the consistency, and one of the things we talked about this week, over the last decade, everything we’ve done once, we’ve done multiple times, and it’s kind of been a progression. We won our first division in ’09, well, we’ve won seven now. At that point we had not won a division, and then we come back in ’11 and we won the league. We hadn’t won the league since like 1991. Now we’ve won it five times. We won 10 games in ’11. That was the first time since ’90 or ’91. Now it’s been eight years. We got to a BCS in ’11 and ’13. I told them they lit up the Empire State Building once, and now they’ve done it again.”
Swinney on Nick Saban’s program
“You know, I’ve never been in his program, so I really – I’ve not been inside his walls. I’ve never been in his staff meetings, so I can’t really answer that with a lot of knowledge. All I can say is I think that we’re both true to who we are. Coach Saban believes in who he is and how he does things. I believe in who I am and how I do things. And although that may be different, we may have a different approach, day-to-day approach in maybe how we run our programs. I think that we both have had a level of consistency because we believe and are convicted to our core values, and it just shows that there’s lots of different ways to do things.”
Swinney on the play of Albert Huggins and “next man up” mentality
“Oh, man, I’m excited about it. I love that. I can’t wait to have that meeting on Friday. It’s always a fun meeting for me to kind of reset the room, if you will, and kind of paint a picture of what this new journey is going to look like and what we’ve got to do. Every year is a new challenge, and you don’t carry anything over. Trevor has got to go earn the job again. Trayvon has got to go earn the job again. We’ve got a starting point, but he’s got to prove that he’s still the best player.”
Swinney on Nolan Turner
“Yeah, we get a lot of that. There’s a lot of people that think we just do favors. People create their own stories. That’s why you can’t pay attention to that stuff, man. That’s another reason we’ve been successful is we do things that we believe in. We don’t sign players that we don’t feel like bring great value to our program.”
Swinney on recruiting to a “three-year standard”
“Oh, I don’t recruit anybody to that. I think for me to – I mean, I’m not God. God has got the plan for their lives. What I recruit them to is the opportunity that they have to come be a part of our program and the resources that they’re going to have a chance to tap into, the development that they’re going to be afforded academically, athletically, just career wise, you name it, the experience that they’re going to have. That’s what I talk about.”