Boulware defends Wilkins inappropriately grabbing OSU player
|2017-01-04 11:53:26.0- -||
The Clemson Football team embarrassed Ohio State 31-0 in the 2016 Fiesta Bowl in front of a stunned national television audience.
There was a very strange moment during the game when Clemson defensive lineman Christian Wilkins inappropriately grabbed Ohio State running back Curtis Samuels while he was lying face first on the ground. The play has made the rounds all over the Internet since it happened on Saturday night. However, there was no penalty called on the play by the referees.
Wilkins apologized for the incident after the game according to an interview with ESPN's David Hale.
"I was being silly, and I apologize for that," Wilkins said to Hale. "It's stuff you do when you're competing, and I know that's not a good look. I apologize for that, and I shook hands with him after the game. There was no hard feelings."
Wilkins declined to comment further on the incident on Tuesday and just wants to focus on the upcoming game against Alabama.
His teammate Ben Boulware wanted the media and the fans to know that they are blowing the awkward incident way out of proportion.
"That stuff kind of annoys me," Boulware said during Clemson's media day on Tuesday. "The game is so serious and it's so locked in out there, you try to do stuff just to have fun, to break up the seriousness of the game. Please are trying to say 'sexual assault' -- people that say that have either never played football, have never been in a locker room and seen the weird stuff. We're together every day for years and years and years. You get very comfortable around each other. I know there's going to be that one person: 'Well, I played football and I never did that.' You either sucked at football, you had no friends in the locker room, or you were the person that went in the bathroom stall to go change because you were scared to shower with the team. We do that stuff just to have fun out there, just to mess with the team."
Boulware thinks that players don't really care about the inappropriate touching by different players.
"I know none of those players care," Boulware said. "I know Zach Bailey didn't care about that at all. You saw on film where he didn't freak out. 'Do you all practice this at Clemson?' No, we practice beating y'all by 49 points. That's something I did on the side. It's annoying, because the players don't care. Like you saw [Curtis] Samuel didn't do anything at all. That's for the media to blow that up. Yes, Christian went -- he went about four fingers deep. He went a little too far. But when I'm just messing with somebody, poking them in the belly button or grabbing someone's butt, it's just to break up the seriousness of the game. The people who are freaking out about that have never played the game, or were just losers who didn't have any friends when they played the game. It's annoying."
Dabo Swinney told reporters on Tuesday that he had a conversation with Wilkins about the incident.
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