Photo by © Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports
Clemson Football

Swinney on Kelly Bryant: "You've gotta be on the team to get a ring"

August 8, 2019
3,877

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Just one day left!! Get the deal today!


In a recent interview with ESPN’s Chris Low, Dabo Swinney broke down Clemson’s decision not to send former starting quarterback Kelly Bryant a national championship ring.

Last season, Bryant kicked off the year as Clemson starting quarterback after guiding the Tigers into the College Football Playoff as the top seed during his junior year.

During the beginning of the year, Bryant and true freshman Trevor Lawrence split most of the reps and before Bryant’s transfer, we clearly laid out the data proving that a move to the former five-star Lawrence had to be made.

Bryant, who was 16-2 as a starter, was replaced by Lawrence after the Georgia Tech game took advantage of the NCAA’s new four-game redshirt rule and entered the transfer portal.

© John Glaser-USA TODAY Sports
Kelly Bryant carries the football against the Aggies in 2018.

It was a shocking move, and many fans will never forget that Bryant was given the keys to the offense in the second half of the Tigers’ 28-26 win at Texas A&M during week two.

Without Bryant’s performance, some felt like the Tigers would have fallen on the road in Aggieland. Bryant passed for 205 yards with a touchdown to Diondre Overton and also led the team in rushing with 54 yards and a score.

Further examination shows that sticking with Bryant in the 4th quarter was potentially a bad move given Lawrence’s efficiency throughout the year. 

During that quarter, Clemson had ten rushes for 47 yards, and Bryant was just 1-3 passing for five yards in the period. Tack on three penalties for 44 yards and Clemson netted just nine yards on three possessions in the final frame allowing the Aggies to creep back into the contest.

Some would argue, without Bryant, Clemson’s path to 15-0 and a national championship might have ended in College Station that night. Looking at the data from the entire season, we tend to disagree.

However, that thought process did leave some to feel that Bryant was worthy of a championship ring. Others felt like he bailed on the team and shouldn’t be entitled to anything.

According to Swinney, it’s simple.

"He wasn't on the team. You've gotta be on the team to get a ring,” Swinney noted. "I love Kelly and appreciate what he did for us, but he decided to move on."

"He wasn't on the team. You've gotta be on the team to get a ring,” Swinney noted. "I love Kelly and appreciate what he did for us, but he decided to move on."

When Bryant decided to leave Clemson, he forfeited his right to a ring according to the two-time national championship-winning head coach.

And while Swinney has always been clear that it was a tough decision, but one that he had to make, Bryant calling it a “slap in the face,” certainly couldn’t have helped his cause. 

“I thought Kelly would stay and keep playing and compete. But he chose to move on,” Swinney noted. “Trevor took it and ran with it and got better and better."

Discussion from...

Swinney on Kelly Bryant: "You've gotta be on the team to get a ring"

3,622 Views | 2 Replies | Last: 4 mo ago by CLEMSON.81.16.18
TonyTiger
How long do you want to ignore this user?
I'm telling you, this put a smile on my face. I appreciate what KB did for the program, but you can't bail and be rewarded.
CLEMSON.81.16.18
How long do you want to ignore this user?
Yup. If he would have redshirted but stayed on the team. But no, he quit. No soup for you!
Page 1 of 1
 
×
Verify your student status
See Subscription Benefits
Trial only available to users who have never subscribed or participated in a previous trial.