The hometown kid Darien Rencher from T.L. Hanna High School got the chance to walk on to a Clemson Football team that would change his life. For Rencher, it’s been about the journey, enjoying the ride and making an impact, whether that’s on the field or off.
Named in 2020 the Disney Spirit Award Winner for college football’s most inspirational figure, Rencher says it’s all faith and favor. In his sixth season at Clemson, Rencher knows his time is coming to an end, and he’s doing all he can to make an impact.
Rencher on his last game in Death Valley:
“The last game, the emotions haven’t really hit me yet. I think they will. We do a thing on Friday night where the parents send voice memos. I think my parents will probably say something that will trigger me to start shedding some tears. I think this week I’ve been flashing back on my journey. I’m just really honestly proud of myself and thankful for the opportunity I’ve had to come here. I’ve been a part of one of the best runs in college football ever.”
Rencher on what he’s learned at Clemson:
“I’ve learned a lot. I think the biggest thing is how blessed you are to come play Division I college football. I think how special Clemson is as a place … I’ve been here for six years and I wouldn’t come back if I didn’t like this place. I’m thankful for the people I’ve gotten to see every side of this thing. Me and my AD (Dan Radakovich) are close, me and the president (Jim Clements) are close, me and my coach (Dabo Swinney) are close. I’ve been a part of the toughest parts of college football in 2020 and been a part of a national championship, I’ve learned a lot.”
Rencher on Clemson’s season this year:
“As painful as this year’s been, it’s also been that much enjoyable. Coach Swinney talks about it a lot, the appreciation for winning. That’s never been more evident. The game against Louisville when we’re dancing in the locker room, we remember what it felt like to win again. It felt good, and never counting people out — time will tell a better story.”
Rencher on what’s next for him:
“I’m a dreamer, kind of replaying what got me here, just doing that all over again. Looking at what excites me most and what scares me most and seeing what opportunities are out there. I’m going to sneak into the league like I snuck into Clemson and try to make a name for myself. We will see how the season finishes out, and I’ll probably go train for a couple of months, come back on pro day and see if somebody gives me a shot. I kind of need some luck and some favor, but that’s been my story honestly.”
Rancher on extending Clemson’s longest home win streak to 34 games:
“That means a lot and it shows as bad as this year has been, we still have a lot to fight for. That would be a cool accomplishment to walk out here and say I’ve only lost one game. That’s something we still want to defend.”
Clemson Variety & Frame is doing their part to help bring you some classic new barware and help one of the local businesses that helps make Clemson special.
Order your Nick’s barware and do your part to help. #SaveNicks