Swinney 'more proud' of something that happened off the field in Louisville

Swinney 'more proud' of something that happened off the field in Louisville


Swinney 'more proud' of something that happened off the field in Louisville


Dabo Swinney arrived to Louisville later than his team this weekend, as Clemson’s head coach stayed back to watch his son Clay play at Daniel High School on Friday night.

But when Dabo did get to Louisville, before Saturday’s game against the Cardinals, there was a moment on the bus that meant a lot to him.

During his Zoom conference call with reporters Sunday evening, Swinney shared a story of an interaction he had with the bus driver and what she had to say about his team.

“I didn’t get up to Louisville until late. I watched my son play in a playoff game and I flew up. I got up there late, so the team had already gotten up there,” Swinney said. “So game day, I get out to the bus, and I’m always the first one out to the bus while the team’s finishing up walk-through right before we get on the bus.

“So I’m sitting on the bus. This is the first time I’ve been on the bus at Louisville there, and there was a lady that was our driver. Her name is Linda, and she hops on the bus and introduces herself. And then she told me – this is literally right before we’re getting ready to load up to go to the game – she said she had been driving the bus for 15 years. She’s had many, many, many teams over the years, and she said, ‘I just want you to know this is the best group of young men and people that I have ever, in 15 years, dealt with.’”

Swinney added that her words “set the tone for the whole night,” which ended with the Tigers rallying in the fourth quarter for a 30-24 win over the Cardinals.

“To me, that just set the tone for the whole night, and I told the team that after the game,” Swinney said. “I was proud of them for how they won, but that’s why they won. That’s the character of your team shining through. I’ve had a lot of fun with these guys this year, and hopefully we can continue to build and finish strong, have a great finish, the best possible finish we can have. That’s our goal. But man, I’m more proud of that right there. That one little moment, sitting there in the quietness of the bus – that meant a lot to me, and again, that’s what you’ve seen.

“We don’t always make it easy, we don’t always do everything right. But man, this team has a lot of character, a lot of good people, a ton of heart and grit and toughness. So to be where we are, especially with our backs against the wall since day one, it’s a lot of great lessons that will come from it for them, for our team moving forward and for a lot of these guys eventually in their lives.”

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