Swinney takes up for his players, demands they get respect they deserve

Swinney takes up for his players, demands they get respect they deserve

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Swinney takes up for his players, demands they get respect they deserve

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Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said Saturday’s famous rant that went viral following Saturday’s win over rival South Carolina was something he needed to get off his chest. It was what he called a “season’s worth of rhetoric” that has been hovering around his program ever since the Tigers took down Alabama in last year’s national championship game.

“It’s like ‘the opponent was tired’ or whatever and all of that type of stuff,” Swinney said during Sunday’s ACC conference call to preview next week’s ACC Championship Game against Virginia. “Then you come into this season and it seems like every week … I even had to answer a question when the (ESPN) First Take Show was here, about ‘a lot people think if you go undefeated you should not be in the (College Football Playoff).’

“It is just ludicrous! But that is kind of what has been out there all year, as opposed to focusing on who we are as a team.”

Swinney was asked following the win over the Gamecocks if the Tigers’ 38-3 victory was important and how it was portrayed nationally. So, he was just answering the question, but at the same time he wanted to tell the truth about how he felt.

“I am not going to let anybody diminish what’s been accomplished by our program. First of all, because it is incredible,” Swinney said on Sunday. “Again, even going back to ACC media days, I made the comment then. Now, we used to could not win in the postseason because we did not play people. Now, we only win because we don’t play people. It is just the same old story line, but people just flip it around to whatever agenda they want to have.

“My job is to speak the truth and stand up for this program when I feel like it is necessary.”

It is amazing Swinney’s is having to defend his program, despite being 12-0 and owning the nation’s longest win streak at 27 games. Clemson also owns the nation’s longest road win streak (12) and longest home win streak (22).

The Tigers have also won five straight ACC Atlantic Division Championships and are going for a fifth straight league title next week at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte.

A win over Virginia will seal Clemson’s five straight entry into the CFP, where it has won two of the last three national championships and played for it in three of the last four years.

Clemson has outscored its last seven opponents 353-61, while becoming just the third team in the AP Poll era to beat seven straight opponents by 30 or more points.

The Tigers also own a six-game win streak on the Gamecocks, something that has not happened in the rivalry since they won seven straight games from 1934-’40.

The defense also held all 12 opponents under 300 yards of total offense and has a 15-game streak of holding the opposition to 20 points or less.

“What has been accomplished by this group is unbelievable. It is incredible,” Swinney said. “They have won 27 games in a row. They have won four conference titles in a row with a chance for a fifth. They have been in four playoffs and they have won two of the last three national championships and have beaten the best of the best to do it, period!

“So, people who are not focused on what Travis Etienne has done, what Trevor Lawrence has done. I mean, people still want to talk about how he threw interceptions at the beginning of the year. It is a joke! It’s a joke! It does not make any sense.”

Swinney continued his rant was about making sure his players got the credit they deserved.

“I just answered the guys question because he asked me if (the South Carolina win) meant anything nationally,” he said. “I was like, ‘What are you talking about? Yeah, it’s a huge a game! It has a lot of national relevance for us.’ If we lose, they want to throw us out because they don’t respect who we play, which is another joke by itself.”

Order your shirt today to remember Clemson’s 38-3 win over South Carolina

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