Dabo Swinney probably regrets making these comments.
The Clemson coach offered up his comments back in 2015 in regards to players profiting off their name, image and likeness.
“They may want to professionalize college athletics. Well, then, maybe I’ll go to the pros. If I’m going to coach pro football, I might as well do that,” Swinney said.
“As far as paying players, professionalizing college athletics, that’s where you lose me,” Swinney added. “I’ll go do something else because there’s enough entitlement in this world as there is.”
Nobody forgot what he said and, that included Marlon Humphrey.
Clemson’s current players say Swinney is fully supportive of the new NIL legislation.
“He’s excited,” tailback Darien Rencher told ACC Network’s “Packer and Durham.” “He kind of catches some things that get out of context, but he’s excited for us to make the most of the opportunity. He’s equipping us with everything as much as they can to make sure we have as much content and as much connections as we can. I feel like Clemson’s been set up to win for a very long time and now we kind of get released to be all we can be.”
Swinney declined to comment on the new NIL rules that took effect Thursday.
“I love the collegiate model,” Swinney said in 2019, after the NCAA announced its initial working group to study name, image and likeness. “I love the model of education. I’ve always valued that. The game has changed tremendously in a positive way, and I think a lot of people aren’t informed and don’t understand how we’ve improved the game from a financial standpoint. The value of a scholarship is incredible. The improvements of meals and stipends and paying for parents to travel. There’s a lot of positives. But that doesn’t mean there’s not room to improve things, and you’ve got to always look for ways to get better. That’s the job of the NCAA.”
On Thursday, numerous players on Clemson announced initial NIL deals, including star receiver Justyn Ross and Rencher, who said the support from the school is critical in finding success in the new NIL era.
“The fact that you can make money doesn’t equate to you making money,” Rencher said. “Even for the first-round guys, there’s money to be made, but you still have to put together a marketing plan. That’s going to be the biggest thing.”