Jobs with benefits

There are certain perks to this gig that folks pay a lot of money to experience, but there are some that don't even deserve a price tag.

Sometimes, I have to pinch myself. I'm actually getting paid to go watch football, basketball and baseball games. The only tradeoff is I have to mash a few keys on my laptop when the games are over and tell people what happened and why I think it happened that way.

Not a bad deal, right?

Some of my best friends have the OK. If they ever hear me complain about something regarding this job, haymakers are welcomed. That's right. Punch me in the face, because what I do for a living is pretty sweet.

To be honest, it's probably better than your job, unless you're a Sports Illustrated swimsuit photographer.

There are a few cons to the deal. Confronting Dabo Swinney, Brad Brownell and Jack Leggett just minutes after a loss is never easy. Chasing down elite-level high school athletes for quotes can get frustrating. And asking Mike Krzyzewski a question will likely result in public humiliation.

Other than that, it's not all that bad. It's taken my talents to South Beach, Cameron Indoor Stadium, Boston and beautiful Buffalo.

I've had great seats for some really, really good games over the last four years -- Clemson at Miami in 2009, Clemson at Auburn in 2010, Clemson vs. Florida State in 2011, the 2012 Chick-fil-A Bowl and countless games in Littlejohn Coliseum.

But anybody can experience that stuff with the time, inclination and cash. What you can't put a price tag on is day one of officially working for Roy Philpott and

For starters, day one of ‘work' at was golf.

Not a bad deal, right?

After introducing myself to Dabo Swinney before his media golf outing, I was then shown the names of my three teammates in the captain's choice tournament.

Call it luck, fate or Tim Bourret throwing me a bone because of my last name, but I couldn't have asked for a better playing group -- it had nothing to do with our game on the links.

Former Clemson football assistant Whitey Jordan, assistant video director Chad Lampman, who now works for Duke, and former Clemson baseball coach Bill Wilhelm were all stuck with me. I couldn't help but feel bad for them, because my golf game stinks.

Whitey and Chad were in one cart. I chauffeured coach Wilhelm in the other.

In between my shanked drives and missed putts, none of which I really remember, I spent several very memorable hours beside a living legend. Coach and I shared stories, jokes and plenty of laughs, though I let him do most of the talking.

Sharp as a tack, coach passed a number of tips my way. From putting and how to go about my business as a reporter, I did my clinged to every word he said. That's what you do when you're hanging out with living legend.

I never saw him again after that day. Once we smiled and shook hands after dinner that was it. Just over a year later, Wilhelm died on Christmas Eve at the age of 81.

It's a shame he wasn't around to learn that his name will go into the Clemson Ring of Honor. Though we only met once, I'm sure Wilhelm would have been touched by his induction. He loved Clemson, but you know that. His 36 years as the school's head baseball coach are a pretty good indication.

He'll go into the Ring of Honor with another Clemson legend, former football coach Danny Ford.

With no emotional attachment to the university or its athletics, I'm happy that Ford is being inducted while he's still living and able to enjoy the moment for however many years he has left.

I just consider myself lucky to have met him and the other fella he'll be immortalized with later this fall. Top Stories