Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney was fired up again on Monday night after a caller on his weekly call-in radio show asked him more about the postponement of the Tigers’ game with Florida State this past Saturday in Tallahassee, Fla.
Below is the direct quote from the nearly six-minute answer Swinney gave.
“Rules have been one way for ten weeks and then all of a sudden they change on a Saturday morning. It was pretty disappointing. I know what the facts are. I laid them out very clear. I don’t make the rules and our medical people run all of that and to me, not only did we met the standard to play, it is a shot at our medical people. Point blank.
“I also know for a fact that Pitt traveled there and had a kid test positive there and they still played the game. That is kind of interesting, too.
“Bottom line is, it was certainly frustrating because again, there is so much that goes into it. People have no idea the protocols we have in place here and our kids have bought in.
“How many of our kids have opted out here this year? I told everybody. Nobody had to be here. No coach, no player and come back in January. But everybody is here because we have a lot of trust in this program and we do things the right way. We love our players. The last thing we would ever do is put somebody in harm’s way. And it is an insult to the credibility of our program, the credibility of our medical people. We all agree to the same rules and magically those rules changed on a Saturday morning.
“I don’t give a crap what they say. I know what the facts are. I know what the standard of play is. I know why the rosters were expanded to eighty because we anticipated positives on Friday. We said we need to take more players. The only thing that was going to cancel a game was if you got below fifty-three scholarships players, you did not have at least seven scholarship offensive linemen or your local communities were overrun at the hospitals, etc. Other than that you play the game.
“There is trust that both team are following all the protocols and all of those things. All I can tell you is that is what we have done all year. And there has been positives all year in every program, but we have not had many. We have had positives, obviously Trevor [Lawrence]. It is just unfortunate that it was not resolved because it could have been, should have been resolved.
“We had no positives yesterday, zero! Tested yesterday and zero. Tested 150 on Friday and one positive and we did not travel everybody … are you kidding me? I am so sure, this is a backup offensive lineman that was not even going to probably play. You think we would … I mean it is just crazy.
“Anyway, it is a frustrating deal and it is what it is. They made the decision and nobody over here agreed with it, from our President, to our medical advisory group, to our AD, to all of my bosses. I don’t make the decisions, I coach the team. I just know what the rules are and I know what they have been all year and they just magically changed.
“Again, I know Pitt went down there and played, and they had a positive kid. But they played the game. The rules were never set up that you had a positive on Friday you cancel the game. They were never set up that way.
“I am not trying to be a doctor. I just listen to my doctors. And one thousand percent, and that is why it was stated because they wanted to be very clear there was a disagreement. It is frustrating.
“So, we move on and I know what the facts are. People can say whatever they want to say. Their coach can say whatever he wants to say. I know this, our kids have been all in all year and have done everything asked of them. So, when somebody wants to make it like we have not done something, I have a problem with that and I am going to fight for that and I am going to stand up for what is right.
“If that bothers people then too bad. If telling the truth is wrong then guess what, then too bad because I am going to tell the truth and that is exactly what happened.
“The reason we test on Fridays is because guys can be negative Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. So, we wanted to catch them and pull them out and quarantine them and then everybody through the week, you control the direct contact by mitigating everything.
“That is what we have done and that is what everybody has tried to do. Anytime there is a positive test, whether it is Friday, whether it is Wednesday or whether it is Monday or Sunday, guess what? Prior to that positive test, you know what that player was doing? Practicing football, playing football.
“It is just a bunch of hogwash.”
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