The Clemson Tigers and coach Dabo Swinney have four quarterbacks fighting for an opportunity to start this fall, but most eyes fall on incumbent Kelly Bryant and No. 1 overall recruit Trevor Lawrence.
And after an entire spring to evaluate their deep and talented quarterback room, Swinney doesn’t see an end in sight to the position competition.
Bryant missed two big throws during the spring game on Saturday, while Lawrence looked solid, completing 11 of 16 passes for 122 yards and a touchdown. That prompted the following comments from Swinney:
“Regardless of what any post-spring depth chart is, it just really doesn’t matter because we don’t play until September,” Swinney said, according to David Hood of TigerNet.com. “This is not, ‘OK, here’s the depth chart and here’s who is playing against Furman.’ It doesn’t work that way.
“There’s a lot of work to be done. You’ve got to earn it every day and that’s what we tell these guys at every position. If Clelin [Ferrell] decides to be a jackleg this summer and not work and eat Twinkies and grow fat, he’s not guaranteed to start.
“It doesn’t matter what he did last year. You’ve got to earn it and prove it every day and that’s at every position, not just quarterback. We’ll sit down and meet with all of those guys and tell them exactly where they are and what they’ve got to do this summer. Then, we’ll pick it back up in August and go from there.”
Ultimately, it’s a good problem to have if you’re Clemson. The Tigers have a solid returning option with starting experience in the College Football Playoff and a potentially dynamic young player who is heralded by some as the best quarterback prospect of the Internet recruiting era.
The Tigers should be in good hands either way, but it’s becoming clear that this is becoming more of a battle than some people might have thought at the outset of spring.