Quick Hits with Dabo Swinney

We caught up with Clemson wide receivers coach Dabo Swinney earlier this week to get his thoughts on the upcoming season, and also on his impressive group of wide receivers.

Can you give us a feel for what exactly is going on right now for the you and the rest of the coaching staff? Are you fully focused on recruiting at this point during the offseason?
Swinney: Well we just finished coming back from the road for the last four weeks, evaluating rising seniors, prospects for next year. We've been in the office too watching film, meeting, trying to decide who we are going to offer and finalize our recruiting board. We had our first camp last weekend which went well and then we have our first three day camp starting this Sunday. Those will go the sixth through the 12th, and then we'll have a 7-day passing camp on the 13th and 14th. We'll take two or three weeks and come back ready to go.

When do things really start cranking for the season opener against Wake Forest?
Swinney: We had a good spring and we actually already have a little bit of a head start on Wake Forest. We've got a lot of preliminary work already done already. We'll have a our hideaway meetings here in a few weeks and that's when we'll start focusing in on the regular season.

There were a lot of position changes for you this offseason, and Chansi Stuckey seemed to be the focal point of those changes this spring. Can you talk about what you are expecting of him this year?
Swinney: Well, it's not really fair to him to be honest with you because I've got huge expectations for him. Very high expectations. Unfortunately, he's got to grow up and be a playmaker and be ready to go in a hurry. Especially with our schedule. We don't have the luxury of bringing him along. Talent wise- there's a lot to be excited about. I'm concerned a little bit because we've got some guys who have great great talent, but they've never done it with the lights on. That makes me lose a little bit of sleep at night, but I think Chansi is going to be fantastic. I think he's going to get better every week and he has a tremendous work ethic and he's a highly skilled athlete.

Two guys I'd like to ask you about in particular- Gerald McCloud and Chris Jefferson. What have you seen out of those guys this past spring?
Swinney: Well they are going to have to get better in camp to be honest with you if they want to contribute. They did some good things in spring. Chris is a little bit ahead from a mental side of things, Gerald is a little further ahead physically. Both of those guys can help us if they have a good camp. Two practices a day this fall will help both of those guys out a lot. You know that's the thing during fall practice, you have so much more time to develop as a player. They can get in the mix, but they'll have to have a good camp this fall to do it.

What about Kelvin Grant? Is he good to go this fall?
Swinney: Well he's got to finish up strong academically this summer and hopefully he's going to do that. That's the biggest thing. He's continuing to do things right, especially this spring. He was our most improved wide receiver this spring. If he's out there this fall, I think Kelvin will have a phenomenal season for us.

What about the incoming freshmen? Is there any one player in particular that you feel like can come in and help out immediately?
Swinney: Well, I really think at least one of those guys is going to have to help you. The thing is you never know who that guy is going to be. The guy that you think can come in and help you- sometimes he redshirts. Then the guy you think that's going to redshirt, doesn't. So it's hard to say. I think we've got four really good little prospects coming in here. Aaron Kelly, La'Donte Harris, Andrew Diomonde, and a kid that we've got walking on that not a lot of people know about- a kid named Nelson Faerber out of Georgia. Which one or two helps us? I'm not sure yet, and I'll have to wait and see during camp.

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