Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney was clearly fired up at his media conference Tuesday morning.
Not only did Swinney give a passionate sermon about the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas, but, when asked whether or not he believed starting cornerback Ryan Carter could be this good when he recruited Carter, Swinney launched into a four-minute rant about the “recruiting narrative” that surrounded Carter.
Carter played at Grayson (Ga.) High School alongside No. 1 overall recruit Robert Nkemdiche, David Kamara and former Clemson running back Wayne Gallman. When Swinney and the Tigers offered Carter, some speculated that they only did so to attract his teammates.
Swinney lampooned that notion Tuesday.
“I don’t know why you all think we recruit people who can’t play,” Swinney said to reporters during the rant. “We don’t sign guys we don’t think can play. Damn right, we thought he could play. We would have signed the guy much earlier had it not been because of the ridiculous narrative that we were trying to sign him because of another guy at that school.”
Swinney went on to say that sometimes they decline to offer a recruit that is receiving attention from “a million” other schools, and other times they find diamonds in the rough that go largely unnoticed by other programs. Swinney named current Tampa Bay Buccaneer receiver Adam Humphries as one such example.
“I don’t think Adam Humphries had any offers,” Swinney said. “No, we didn’t offer him to get (former Clemson wide receiver) Charone Peake. We offered because we wanted him.”
Eventually, Swinney circled back to Carter. He praised Carter’s instincts, toughness and football intelligence, among other attributes, and said the Clemson coaches saw that in him as a high-schooler.
“We loved him,” Swinney said. “We thought he was a baller. We felt he could play. I watched him on a kickoff coverage and he ran down Dalvin Cook. And we loved Dalvin Cook.
“He was returning punts, he played safety. Mickey Conn was the head coach. He said the guy was a freaking baller.”
Check out the full video of Swinney’s rant below.
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