Dabo Swinney leaning on faith during tough times of 2020
|Wednesday, September 16, 2020, 2:46 PM- -|
Clemson coach Dabo Swinney has never shied away from telling people that his Christian faith is the foundation from which he lives his life.
Swinney says he has leaned into that faith quite a bit going through the tough times that have come with 2020.
“It’s been tough, just like it has for everyone," Swinney told the Jim Rome Show on Wednesday. "I’m 50 now, so I’ve got thick skin and I have a lot of water under the bridge. I’ve had a lot of challenges along the journey of life. The one thing I’ve learned from all the challenges of life is for me -- it’s always come back to my faith. I’m strong in my faith. God always -- He’s the great I Am. Not the great I-used-to-could-be or I-forgot-about-you-guy. He’s still there."
Rome asked Swinney if he ever had his doubts about the 2020 season happening and the veteran Tigers coach said he had a bad feeling the weekend before the Big Ten and Pac-12 postponed their seasons, as an emergency meeting was called for the Monday before those two leagues made their initial decision.
Swinney told Clemson media on Tuesday that he challenged his players before that meeting to fight for their season and Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence and RB Darien Rencher were at the forefront of a movement that worked in accomplishing just that.
As his name has become more widely known, Swinney says he has also relied on his faith to push on through criticism.
"Sometimes we go through things in life we don’t like. Don’t understand. But for me, my anchor comes from the Lord. That just helps me push through anything and everything that comes my way," Swinney said. "Just to try to stay grounded and not get caught-up in things that really don’t matter or with people who do not really know me. In my job, there’s just people who are gonna hate me regardless -- they don’t even know me. But that just comes with the territory. I just try to keep my eyes on the good Lord in the good and the bad."
Swinney said he sees a greater plan through the extra challenges.
"I always say that adversity will either define you, destroy you or develop you," said Swinney. "And that really is a choice. And if you have God at the center of your life, He’ll use whatever you’re going through to develop you into something better. I hope that I’m no different than anyone else out there in just continuing to get better and continuing to grow. It’s been some challenging times, but it’s also been a lot of good. It’s been a lot of good. I’m thankful. We have to be grateful for all things.
"It’s what the Lord teaches us and that’s what I try to do, even when I don’t like it. I always say that God never says ‘Oops.’ And I hate that, but that’s kinda how I choose to live my life and keep on keeping on."
"My 12th year as head coach, but I'll never forget that one, ever. That was as special a moment as I've had and I mean that with all my heart, just simply because of all that it took to get there."@ClemsonFB's Dabo Swinney tells @jimrome how it felt to play the season opener. pic.twitter.com/ipeF4pX1WJ— CBS Sports Network (@CBSSportsNet) September 16, 2020