It’s been an uncharacteristic season for a Clemson team that no longer has playoff aspirations. The Tigers’ chances of making a run at a Conference Championship all but ended during Saturday’s 27-17 loss to Pitt at Heinz Field.
Clemson’s coaching staff, specifically offensive coordinator Tony Elliott, has drawn a lot of heat and criticism for the offense’s inability to look like a competent unit. The Tigers have failed to score over 19 points in regulation against an FBS opponent.
That, unfortunately, for the Tigers, bleeds into the recruiting trail. Opposing teams recruiting the same players will use it as an opportunity to discredit a program that’s been an epitome for success over the past decade.
Elliott was asked what his message would be for prospective recruits during Monday’s media availability with reporters.
“Don’t buy the lie,” Elliott said Monday,” because you’re gonna get beat up in recruiting by all the other schools that are gonna say things. What I do know is that we got a proven formula, a proven plan and right now, we’re just going through a time of adversity, but on the other side is gonna be something really, really special. So, just weather the storm. Don’t buy the lie. Ask the questions you really wanna ask. Don’t take anyone else’s word for it. And then, just do your research.
“Coach Swinney’s 6-7, and what? Best decade in college football and that was accomplished here. So, we still have everything in place, but also too, the beautiful thing is adversity builds character and reveals character. This is a great opportunity for our program to show what we’re really about, the good and the bad, then get back to where we believe we should be in the future.”
In the College Football Playoff era, Clemson has made 6 out of 7 appearances. Obviously, it will be 6-of-8 following this season, but that’s besides Elliott’s point. The Tigers are going through a rough patch, but he wants recruits to understand that the proof is in the pudding and this season shouldn’t be indicative of what this staff has and can accomplish.