With Garrett Williams nursing his knee and still undecided on what he will do when it comes to playing football or not in 2019, Dabo Swinney has him still working this spring. His job? He is coaching his teammates up.
“If you want a son, you want him to be like Garrett. He is such a neat guy,” the Clemson head coach said. “He is one of the most conscientious young people. He is genuine and just loves his team.”
Swinney has said on a few occasions Williams has not decided if he will retire from football and begin his military career this year, but he feels as if the graduate student is leaning in that direction. However, this spring, Williams is using his time to be a coach.
Following Wednesday’s practice at the Poe Indoor Practice facility, Williams was coaching up Luke Price, a walk-on linebacker the coaching staff moved to tight end to help with depth.
“I think that is so cool,” Swinney said. “I love that about Garrett. Here he is, practice is over, and he is over there coaching a guy … a walk-on tight end that is trying to learn. But it is just really neat to see him out there taking pride in what we are asking him to do.”
The coaching staff has asked Williams to help them coach, in particular freshman Jaelyn Lay, until he makes a decision on his future.
Lay of course is a 4-star product out of Atlanta that signed with Clemson in December and enrolled in school in January. With Braden Galloway’s status still up in the air for the fall due to an NCAA suspension for a failed drug test that is being appealed, the Tigers are trying to get Lay up to speed.
“We literally have (Williams) attached to Jaelyn Lay. They are shadows,” Swinney said. “Don’t leave his sight because he has a lot to learn.”
Williams is a great teacher to learn from. The Orlando, Fla., native has played since his true freshman season at Clemson and has played the position from every angle, H-Back/fullback, pass catcher and blocker.
“The tight end position is really a challenging position to learn because there is just a lot to learn … pass protection, route running, blocking schemes, footwork, fundamentals, you name it,” Swinney said. “Jaelyn is going to be something special, but it is moving fast for him right now.”
And that is why they have Williams coaching him up.
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