During his Pro Day last Friday, Dabo Swinney said Trevor Lawrence could be an International Superstar in the next 10 years. Maybe the Clemson coach was on to something.
On Wednesday, TIME Magazine named Lawrence to its 2021 TIME100 Next list. The list, which is TIME’s second annual list, focuses on 100 emerging stars and leaders that are very influential in shaping the future of the world.
Presumably the No. 1 overall pick in April’s NFL Draft, Lawrence joined the Dallas Mavericks’ Luka Doncic as the only two athletes to make TIME’s Phenom section in the 100 list.
Lawrence made the list, according to TIME writer Sean Gregory, not because of his golden locks of hair or his multi-million-dollar arm or the fact he is considered a once-in-a-generation football player. Certainly, that helped, but instead, the former Clemson quarterback is also being recognized for what he did off the football field this past year with his COVID-19 relief fund, his assistance in Clemson’s Peaceful Community Protest to support Black Lives Matter Movement and his #WeWantToPlay movement prior to the start of the college football season.
“I don’t know how many of those we have had in the NFL. I know we have had a lot of them in basketball and golf and different things,” Swinney said to Jane Slater on the NFL Network last week. “But football is a little different. You take the helmet off sometimes and a lot of people don’t really know who you are. But he has a presence with his helmet on or off.”
Lawrence’s presence on the field led Clemson to a national championship as a freshman and to three ACC Championships. It also led to a 34-2 record as a starting quarterback, while also throwing for more than 10,000 yards and 90 touchdowns in his three-year career as a Tiger.
Some feel if Lawrence would not have spoken up and led the charge, there might not have been a college football season in 2020.
“He is special. I really think he has that in him,” Swinney said. “He is going to be a great, great player for a long time. He is going to be a great player on the first day wherever he is going. But I do think, he is a guy that has the potential, literally, from a global standpoint to have that type of reach.”
Lawrence went on to lead Clemson to a 10-2 record in 2020, including a No. 3 final ranking in the final Associated Press Football Poll. He was also a first-team All-American, the 2020 ACC Player of the Year and the runner-up in the Heisman Trophy race.
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