→ There is Where Clemson Should Be

An excellent column by Dan Wetzel on Dabo Swinney’s time as head coach. A taste:

Swinney had planned for everything: offense, defense, pregame speech. There on a Friday night at the team hotel over in Anderson, however, he realized he hadn’t prepped for the Tigers’ pregame tradition of touching Howard’s Rock and running down the steep, grassy hill in the east end zone of their massive home stadium, his players charging behind him. The assistants don’t run it. They walk onto the field from a different entrance. It’s an honor bestowed on the head coach.

“I just sat there and thought, ‘Oh my God, I’m going to have to run down that hill tomorrow in front of 85,000 people and a bunch of people with TV cameras.'”

and

“It’s a reminder, every week, that ‘man, people care.’ It’s just a game, but it matters. It’s important how we play and how we represent this university. People drive five hours to watch you play and then drive five hours back. They spend their money on this. A lot of these guys aren’t wealthy. We have a blue-collar fan base.

“We may not win all our games but how we compete, how we play, the pride that we take in playing the game a certain way, should be important.”

After reading this piece, I am an even bigger fan of Dabo than I was before. Every Clemson fan should take a few minutes to read it.