High Noon: Dabo Swinney a big fan of noon kickoff at South Carolina


by - Senior Writer -
Dabo Swinney says you can throw the records out when the Tigers and Gamecocks meet.
Dabo Swinney says you can throw the records out when the Tigers and Gamecocks meet.

Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney is a big fan of a noon start on the road.

No. 3 Clemson travels to South Carolina on November 30th in search of a sixth-consecutive victory in the rivalry. The game is scheduled to kick off at noon and will be broadcast on ESPN.

Swinney told TigerNet Monday evening on his teleconference that he loves a noon start on the road.

“I don't spend a lot of time thinking about it. Just tell us when to play and we are going to be ready to play,” Swinney said. “I always love a noon game on the road because you get home earlier. When you play those night games on the road, you get home at 5 a.m. or 5:30 a.m. Our days are the same as coaches on Sunday and it takes a couple of days to recover from that. I always love a noon game on the road. I guess we've had one noon game on the road this year, maybe Louisville. We're going to be excited and ready to go."

South Carolina is 4-7 but Swinney knows Clemson will get the Gamecocks’ best shot.

“You can throw the records out. The records don't matter. This is Clemson-South Carolina,” Swinney said. “You are going to have both teams excited to play and both teams have an open date and two weeks to prepare, so none of that stuff matters. All that matters is what you do those four quarters and nothing carries over, good or bad. You gotta earn it on the field that day during those four quarters, not anything this year or last year.”

Swinney realized early on that the rivalry is important to the people of South Carolina.

"I realized it my first spring here. I was recruiting that spring and I realized it was no different than living in Alabama,” he said. “When I was living in Alabama and coaching at Alabama, half of the people are happy to see you when you're out recruiting and half of them aren't. It was an easy transition for me because I was used to an in-state rivalry. Right out of the gate I realized right away how big a deal it is to people in this state. It's fun to be a part of a great rivalry."

Clemson is 11-0 on the season and has scored 52 or more points in four consecutive games. The defense has held all 11 opponents under 300 yards of total offense this season.

“I love the edge we are playing with and that's what it will take for us to get where we want,” Swinney said. “We have a few guys banged up both nothing serious. A few guys will be back at practice by Wednesday. But we are excited about going down there and our goal is to try to play our very best game and keep building momentum in our season.”

The team will practice Monday night, hold meetings on Tuesday, practice Wednesday and Thursday and then take a break before resuming practice for South Carolina next Monday.

"We don't usually have two open dates. We will do our career fair,” Swinney said. “We won't do community service this week. We'll have an hour-long football meeting tomorrow. Career Fair is a big deal. Our players take a lot of pride in it. It's a big networking opportunity for these guys."

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