Watkins punishment still undecided

CLEMSON - For the first-time since spring practice ended, Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney met with the media to discuss a number of issues.


First on the agenda Tuesday was sophomore wide receiver Sammy Watkins, who was charged with possession of a controlled substance and simple possession of marijuana in late May.

Swinney told a group of reporters, including CUTigers.com's Hale McGranahan, he will not be making a decision Watkins any time in the near future.

"I'm not going to make any decision until we get a little closer to playing time," he said. "The main reason for that is that Sammy has a process he has to deal with. He has the things he has to fulfill this summer and a lot of that will depend on how he responds.

"So far he has hit a home run in every category as far as how he has responded to this situation. Hopefully he has learned a pretty strong lesson from this."

Watkins was a first-team Associated Press All-American as an all-purpose player as a freshman, just the fourth true freshman in college football history to make first-team AP All-American.

He recorded 82 receptions for 1219 yards and 12 touchdowns, setting single-season Clemson records for reception yards and reception touchdowns.

He was also named the ACC Rookie of the Year.

Clemson opens the season Sept. 1 against Auburn in the Georgia Dome, and it has been widely speculated Watkins will miss either part of that game, if not the entire game itself, or multiple games.

Swinney said Watkins will likely miss playing time of some length, but how much has yet to be determined.

"I am not going to talk about that right now. We will have future comments at the appropriate time," he said. "Is there a chance he doesn't miss any time? Probably not."

Several media outlets have also reported Watkins has applied for Pre Trial Intervention (PTI), although it is not known how that could impact Watkins in the eyes of Swinney or Clemson University officials.

"I have a high end form of punishment and a low end. So what he does this summer- plus some other factors as how he has handled himself since last summer that will ultimately determine what I decide to do."

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