Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney lived in Alabama for 33 years. He played football for Alabama. He began his coaching career with the Crimson Tide.
In short, he knows a thing or two about the Alabama-Auburn rivalry. In his Tuesday press conference, Swinney said the rivalry between Clemson and South Carolina is just as fierce.
“I had a good understanding of what a rivalry was all about coming from Alabama,” Swinney said. “Zero difference in this state. Zero.”
“That’s all people talk about. It’s just different logos, but it’s the same type intensity, emotion.”
Swinney said he was introduced to the ferocity of the rivalry when he first started coaching at Clemson and would travel around South Carolina to recruit.
“Everywhere I went people were either really happy to see me or they looked at me like I had a big wart on my nose or something,” Swinney said. “It didn’t take me long to figure out that this rivalry is as intense as any in the country.”
While Alabama and Auburn fans may not agree with Swinney’s assertion — as this tweet from Matt Connelly of the State suggests — Swinney emphasized that he’s been around both rivalries and, from a fan perspective, they’re comparable.
“You’ve got families that kind of split up for a few days,” Swinney said. “They don’t want to talk to each other, they won’t watch the game together.”
“We’ve got the season and then we’ve got South Carolina. It truly is a season of its own.”
Check out the video of Swinney’s remarks below:
— Brad Fralick (@BradFralickWYFF) November 21, 2017