Girdle Gate

CLEMSON - Coach Dabo Swinney told reporters after Monday morning's practice that Clemson would lose two practices this week because of an issue that he's calling, "girdle gate."

ACC officials said improper attire was worn during two practices last week. Clemson's punishment will allow for only two two-a-days instead of four.

"It's exactly what we've always worn around here," Swinney said, "but for whatever reason it became an issue this year on the first two days of practice."

On Thursday, he learned from the team's equipment staff, who heard from the Clemson NCAA compliance department, that the girdles were not proper attire for practices that don't permit pads to be worn.

The girdles, which have built in padding, were worn with helmets and practice jerseys.

Swinney and Sports Information Director Tim Bourret said in previous years' practices shorts have been worn over the girdles.

"If you look at pictures on the Internet, you can see a pad," Bourret said. "Before, they've had shorts over them…they've probably worn those pads the last 10 years."

"If you're robbing a bank, you wouldn't invite the media to come cover it. Obviously, there was no intent to break the rule," Swinney said. "Somebody turned us in on that and the ACC said that was the improper attire.

"If you turn on the TV or look on the Internet, you'll see a lot of high profile universities that had the same attire on that we had."

Conference officials wanted Clemson to start over with practices, not allowing for pads to make up for wearing the girdles. Clemson requested that two scheduled practices be revoked. NCAA officials accepted the proposal, allowing the Tigers to continue wearing pads this week.

Tonight's practice session will be replaced by an hour-long walk through, which is not considered an on the field activity at this time of year, according to the NCAA rules. Friday's afternoon practice session will be replaced by a team function, Swinney said.

The ruling won't be protested or argued.

"That's the way it is. That's how we'll deal with it and we'll move on," Swinney said. Top Stories