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Sport College football winners and losers: Dabo Swinney’s grandstanding was unnecessary

11:50  28 november  2020
11:50  28 november  2020 Source:   washingtonpost.com

Vikings OL Dru Samia tests positive for COVID-19

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Analysis Interpretation of the news based on evidence, including data, as well as anticipating how events might unfold based on past events. College football winners and losers : Dabo Swinney ’ s grandstanding was unnecessary . Clemson Coach Dabo Swinney has been critical of Florida State

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There’s nothing like a pandemic to reveal a football coach isn’t a physician.

a man holding a baseball bat: Clemson Coach Dabo Swinney has been critical of Florida State after last weekend's Clemson-FSU game was postponed due to coronavirus concerns. (Matt Cashore/AP) © Matt Cashore/AP Clemson Coach Dabo Swinney has been critical of Florida State after last weekend's Clemson-FSU game was postponed due to coronavirus concerns. (Matt Cashore/AP)

N.C. State’s Dave Doeren put his foot in his mouth in August. LSU’s Ed Orgeron offered the hope his team would benefit from herd immunity a month later.

Doeren was at least making it clear he was worried about heat-related illnesses and Orgeron hedged his comments by acknowledging he isn’t a doctor and that he “hoped” players who already had contracted the virus would not get it again and have to miss games. They didn’t handle their respective situations with verbal grace and got some scrutiny for it, but neither had any bad intentions.

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Analysis Interpretation of the news based on evidence, including data, as well as anticipating how events might unfold based on past events. Week 12 college football winners and losers . Adrian Ealy (59) and Oklahoma set a school record by rallying from a 25-point deficit to stun Baylor in Waco, Tex.

The initial College Football Playoff ranking of the season has some teams looking up and some looking down. For 12 weeks there has been speculation about how the College Football Playoff committee will handle assessing teams in this uncertain season.

In other words, both tried to talk about a subject they didn’t understand as well as what usually falls in the domain of their regular jobs. It happens. Imprudence does not equal malice.

Which brings up this week’s spat between Clemson and Florida State — or, more specifically, Tigers coach Dabo Swinney and decision-makers at Florida State. The teams were supposed to play last Saturday. Clemson was already in town.

Swinney was less than thrilled Florida State officials balked over medical concerns, leading to the game’s postponement at 9 a.m., three hours before kickoff. Florida State was less than thrilled Clemson had a player test positive for coronavirus on Friday.

This probably should have been a one-day story, but Swinney fired away on Sunday. And again on Tuesday. It’s probably the sort of grandstanding Clemson fans will savor, and it’s not really out of character for Swinney, who is often willing to offer an opinion on a range of subjects. But it’s all unnecessary for two reasons.

Dabo Swinney blasts Florida State for canceled game

  Dabo Swinney blasts Florida State for canceled game Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney blasted Florida State’s administration for canceling their football game on Saturday at the last minute. © Ken Ruinard-USA TODAY Sports Dabo Swinney is furious with FSU for canceling the Clemson-Seminoles game at the last minute. Clemson traveled to Tallahassee to face the Seminoles on Saturday, but the game was postponed at the last minute over a COVID situation (more details here).On Sunday, Swinney was ticked off about things and made that known. He said the FSU administration used the COVID issue as an excuse to cancel the game.

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One, if there is an all-encompassing rule that should be applied to the last eight-plus months, it’s that caution is justified and safety should be a priority — especially when it comes to players who are not, ahem, getting paid anything beyond what they normally receive (scholarship, cost of attendance, etc.) while producing a product that is effectively keeping athletic departments afloat financially in dire times.

Two, even if Clemson believes the 2-6 Seminoles want no part of getting trounced, guess what? Neither team is scheduled to play on Dec. 12, and there’s nothing stopping Clemson from laying a name-your-own-score whupping on Florida State in a few weeks.

The Tigers, while not boasting their best offensive line this season, are certainly capable of hanging a big number on a lot of teams. And the Seminoles are frankly a mess right now. While not likely, Clemson could attempt to drop Tallahassee’s area code (85-0) on Florida State if it was sufficiently motivated and on point, then wave it at the Seminoles for years to come.

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney: No reason to change team's COVID-19 safety measures

  Clemson coach Dabo Swinney: No reason to change team's COVID-19 safety measures Dabo Swinney says Clemson follows COVID-19 regulations and there's no need to keep asymptomatic players who test negative away from team.That’s because the Tigers don’t believe they did anything wrong last week in what ended up with a game at Florida State being canceled three hours before kickoff. Clemson said it followed ACC protocol, and the league agreed, but the Seminoles would not play because a player who tested positive was on the travel party.

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It’s safe to say that would be just what the doctor ordered to soothe the Tigers’ tempers. But quietly rescheduling and then administering a rout of any kind — without needlessly claiming silly gamesmanship in the middle of a pandemic or complaining about the travel costs of a weekend when so much of the world remains inconvenienced — would have been a better way for Swinney and Clemson to handle things.

A lost year: Big Ten edition

Ever since Penn State’s arrival in the Big Ten in 1993, the Nittany Lions’ games against Michigan have been among the most reliably meaningful in the conference.

The Wolverines have won 14 of the 23 meetings (the game cycled off the schedule in 2003 and 2004, and again in 2011 and 2012), but something is usually at stake. Take the 1997 game, when 8-0 Michigan claimed an early November game from 7-0 Penn State. Or just two years ago, when the 7-1 Wolverines blasted the 6-2 Nittany Lions in one of Jim Harbaugh’s best victories as Michigan’s coach.

This year does not fit the pattern. Penn State is 0-5 for the first time in its century-plus program history, and Michigan needed triple overtime to outlast Rutgers last week and improve to 2-3. Only one other time in series history have the teams entered with more than a combined five losses: On Nov. 11, 2000, when 6-3 Michigan dispatched 4-6 Penn State.

Clemson's Swinney still frustrated with FSU postponement

  Clemson's Swinney still frustrated with FSU postponement Clemson coach Dabo Swinney remains frustrated about postponing the Tigers game against Florida State, a decision he sees as an insult to his program's credibility. While the Tigers' players and staff have apparently turned the page, it not quite as easy for Swinney, who touts a “windshield mentality," to let go of how the game was called off. When asked about the decision again Tuesday, Swinney dug in once more. “I know what the rules are, I know what they were and I know we met the standard to play,” he said. “And we didn’t play.”It's the latest in the verbal sparring between the the schools.

Nonetheless, the two blue bloods receive a prominent noon kickoff on ABC. Just don’t feel obliged to pay much attention out of habit to a game that usually warrants plenty of interest — but definitely doesn’t this fall.

Five with the most at stake

1. Alabama. Is Arkansas going to trip up the No. 1 Crimson Tide? Probably not. Might LSU, if the Tigers’ game against Nick Saban’s bunch gets rescheduled? Unlikely this year. But does No. 22 Auburn, which has quietly gotten itself to 5-2 and tamed LSU and Tennessee in its last two outings, have the goods to make the Iron Bowl interesting? You bet.

2. Clemson. Hard as it is to believe given all the talk about last week’s postponement, but the No. 1 Tigers actually have a game this Saturday. Pittsburgh (5-4, 4-4 ACC) rolls into Death Valley after bludgeoning Virginia Tech last week, and the Panthers are probably the greatest remaining threat to Clemson (7-1, 6-1) finding its way to the ACC title game.

3. Notre Dame. The 8-0 Irish head to Chapel Hill on Friday to face an erratic North Carolina team with a habit of nodding off on defense. But the No. 25 Tar Heels (6-2, 6-2 ACC) also have Sam Howell, who threw for 550 yards and six touchdowns in his last outing. This is anything but a gimme for No. 2 Notre Dame.

4. Texas A&M. The last time the Aggies (5-1, 5-1 SEC) played host to LSU, the game went seven overtimes two years ago. The last time the Aggies played host to anyone, it was Halloween. No. 5 Texas A&M had its last two games shelved, and whether it is sharp enough to handle LSU will determine whether it stays in the playoff hunt.

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5. Northwestern. Do the 5-0 Wildcats reload the musket after taking sole possession of first in the Big Ten West with last week’s defeat of Wisconsin? They’ll visit Michigan State (1-3), which has looked overmatched by everyone it has faced other than Michigan.

Heisman Watch

1. QB Kyle Trask, Florida; 2,554 yards, 31 TDs, 3 INTs. Like clockwork, Trask threw for 383 yards and three touchdowns against Vanderbilt. With up to four games left before the postseason, the senior has a chance to wind up around 4,000 yards and 45 touchdown passes — silly numbers in any season, especially this one. (Last week: 3)

2. QB Trevor Lawrence, Clemson; 1,833 yards, 17 TDs, 2 INTs passing; 71 yards, 4 TDs rushing. You’ve got to play to win. Lawrence hasn’t taken the field in the last four weeks, losing two games to a positive coronavirus test and another to a postponement. (LW: 1)

3. RB Najee Harris, Alabama; 797 yards, 16 TDs rushing; 22 receptions for 210 yards. Harris is tied for second in the country in touchdowns scored, behind only North Carolina’s Javonte Williams (18). Expect Harris to receive a healthy workload against Auburn. (LW: 4)

4. QB Justin Fields, Ohio State; 1,208 yards, 13 TDs, 3 INTs passing; 135 yards, 3 TDs rushing. Throwing three interceptions in a defeat of Indiana didn’t help. The underwhelming state of the No. 3 Buckeyes’ remaining opponents before a possible conference title game trip (Michigan State and Michigan) helps Fields even less. (LW: 2)

5. QB Mac Jones, Alabama; 2,426 yards, 18 TDs, 3 INTs passing. Nothing fancy about Jones’ day against Kentucky (230 passing yards, two TDs, one INT), but he’s still in the mix entering the final month of the season. (LW: 5)

6. QB Zach Wilson, Brigham Young; 2,724 yards, 26 TDs, 2 INTs passing; 191 yards, 8 TDs rushing. Padded his numbers like he was supposed to in a half’s worth of work against North Alabama. He’s only scheduled to play one more regular season game (against San Diego State’s stingy defense), but the Cougars could still add a game or two. (LW: 6)

Ravens WR Willie Snead tests positive for COVID-19 Sunday .
Watch some quick efficient passing by Louisville. As soon as David Johnson catches the ball he tosses it up to the hoop for Jae'Lyn Withers to throw it down for the ACC Must See Moment.

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