Clemson Tigers football coach Dabo Swinney remained focused on a national championship Wednesday even as the Big Ten and Pac-12 Conferences postponed their fall sports seasons.
Swinney said Wednesday he didn’t think that fewer teams in the college football pool “damages” the prestige of the 2020 national championship, according to ESPN. He added that he wasn’t going to judge what other conferences do in terms of postponing their seasons for health and safety reasons.
“The four best teams can go play,” Swinney said. “We’ve been one of those four for five years in a row. So, in my opinion, it doesn’t change anything for us. We’re just trying to be the best Clemson we can be. Whoever you play every week, you try to win that game, you try to keep moving forward. We don’t have any control over that stuff. And I certainly don’t judge them in any way. Everybody’s gotta make decisions that they feel is best. If they feel like that’s what best for them, then so be it.”
The Mid-American, Mountain West and Big East Conferences have all postponed their own seasons. Connecticut was the first school to decide not to play. Still, Swinney is still hoping to play.
“Whoever wins it, wins it. That’s the champ,” he said. “It’s the same way in every sport. … Somebody is gonna win a championship, so maybe it’s a shortened season, maybe it’s not as many teams or whatever. But you best believe whoever wins it is gonna have to earn it. Nobody’s gonna give nothing to nobody, so you can only control what you control. We just hope we can have the opportunity to play.”
Clemson’s conference, the ACC, has yet to postpone the fall sports seasons. The conference released a statement after the Big Ten and Pac-12 decided to nix their seasons.
The ACC said the conference “will continue to make decisions based on medical advice, inclusive of our Medical Advisory Group, local and state health guidelines, and do so in a way that appropriately coincides with our universities’ academic missions.”
“The safety of our students, staff, and overall campus communities will always be our top priority, and we are pleased with the protocols being administered on our 15 campuses,” the statement continued. “We will continue to follow our process that has been in place for months and has served us well. “We understand the need to stay flexible and be prepared to adjust as medical information and the landscape evolves.”