Sullivan breathing easier

CLEMSON - It's easy to understand Bernard Sullivan's frustration. After all, the former four-star power forward, Clemson's top-rated signee in 2011, has played sparingly thus far this season.

In fact, in five of the first seven games of the season, Sullivan played only 28 minutes because of asthma symptoms.

"The thing about my asthma, it can flare up on me at any time. Some days I'll go right out there," he said. "The crowd, just the atmosphere, it revs you up a little bit, so that doesn't make it any better. You have to hope it doesn't happen, but it's getting better."

Sullivan takes two different kinds of asthma medication and receives nebulizer treatment. And it all appears to be working.

The 6-foot-7, 225-pound freshman from Gastonia, N.C. has played 31 minutes over the last two games.

"It's definitely frustrating, but I'm going to stay patient, continue to pray, continue to take this treatment and medication," Sullivan said. "Hopefully, it continues to get better like it is."

Clemson coach Brad Brownell has noticed the progress.

"Bernard's health is better," Brownell said. "He's still not 100 percent everyday. He still has some problems."

He added, "I do think he's felt better, more often and had better practices. Consequently, I want him to start getting double-figure minutes and see what he can do."

In the last two games against Arizona and Winthrop, Sullivan has shot 2-of-5 from the field and grabbed four rebounds.

It's progress.

"In high school, I didn't really treat it like I should. It was kind of like, take something for a little while," Sullivan said. "As soon as it gets better I get off of it, instead of continuing to take the medicine, continuing the treatment and everything.

"Now I'm consistently on treatment and medication, to make sure it gets better."

Sullivan understands that the stakes are higher at the college level.

"In high school, being the best player, it's not as hard. Here, every single play is hard, hard, hard…in college, everybody is good. There are bigger, stronger guys. It's much more intense," he said. Top Stories