C.J. Spiller was at track meet in Seneca when he first learned former Clemson running back Tavien Feaster put his name into the transfer portal and announced he was going to transfer out of Clemson.
It was not Feaster that told the Tigers’ greatest running back to date he was leaving, instead it was one of his representatives through a text message. Spiller, whose No. 28 was retired following his All-American career at Clemson, allowed Feaster to wear his jersey when the former 5-star from Spartanburg, South Carolina announced he was going to sign with Clemson in 2016.
But Spiller, who played eight years in the NFL, had no ill will towards Feaster’s decision.
“I just reached out to him and told him, ‘Hey, I am in your corner, always. I want you to make the best decision for you,’” Spiller recalled to The Clemson Insider recently. “’Our relationship has nothing to do if you stay here or go. That’s not what I believe in. When I gave you the blessings to wear my number, that’s a friendship forever. You make the best decisions for you and I hope that you are the one that is making the decision and not getting influenced by anyone else.’”
Spiller said Feaster was very respectful in his response back and the two have not spoken since. However, Spiller plans to check in on him soon.
Feaster has already visited Virginia Tech and is considering in-state rival South Carolina as well as a possible destination. He is scheduled to graduate from Clemson in August, which will allow him to play immediately.
When learning the news Feaster is considering a transfer to South Carolina, Spiller knows there is nothing he can say or do about it because it is ultimately Feaster’s decision.
“At the end of the day, Tavien has to do what is best for him,” Spiller said. “If he decides going to South Carolina is best for him, then the only thing I can do is wish him nothing but success. Obviously, until he plays us.”
As for what it means to Spiller considering he allowed Feaster to wear his retired No. 28 at Clemson.
“I don’t think it has anything to do with it … Obviously, I got a lot (of slack) from my friends and family saying, ‘You should have never done that.’ But at the end of the day, it was my decision to allow a young man who grew up in South Carolina watching me play and had the opportunity to wear that number as well. That was my decision, at the end of the day. I do not regret it at all. I do not regret allowing him to where my number,” Spiller said.
However, Spiller says his No. 28 is going in the closet and it is not coming back out again, except for family.
“I have a little nephew and he wears number twenty-eight right now, unless he comes to Clemson,” Spiller said with a smile. “He is the first grade, but he will have that Tiger blood in him.”
—Watch on TCI’s Clemson’s Finest series: Spiller on decision to share No. 28, Feaster transfer