Dabo Swinney is a fan of the rule, always has been.
“It allows you to communicate with them anytime you want. I think that’s been great. That’s been great with the guys that have signed with us,” he said. “We can talk with them, text with them. I think that’s a very positive thing. But I can definitely see where it can be misused, because everything goes away."
There's been a significant change to the letter of the law when a prospect signs a financial aid agreement with a school.
“Recruiting rules are history,” Swinney said.
So, towards the end of his Tuesday press conference, Swinney answered questions about longtime commitment Deshaun Watson.
“I think he’s pretty good,” Swinney said, in what could be the shortest answer to a question in his career as Clemson’s head coach.
Swinney was asked to delve into the specifics.
“He’s just a great prospect…a great leader, a winner, terrific skill set, especially for what we do,” Swinney said. “He fits our system perfectly. We’re excited to have him to come be apart of our program, no question about that.”
When asked to compare Watson to another quarterback, Swinney hesitated.
“I don’t want to label anybody. I just think he’s a pretty good Deshaun Watson. We’ll see before we start labeling anybody,” Swinney said. “I think he’s a great young man, a tremendous family. He’s been incredibly well coached. Coach [Bruce] Miller and his staff have done a great job. What he does in high school is a perfect fit for what he’s going to do here.
“We’ve been watching him since the ninth grade. He’s been to our camp every year. Just really excited, it’s going to be really fun to see this guy perform at this level. I think he’s going to be one of those guys, once it’s all said and done, just like this guy that’s leaving right now, he’ll leave his mark.”
So why the delay in talking about Watson, who signed his financial aid agreement papers on Sept. 1?
“To be honest with you, I didn’t know we could talk about them,” Swinney said. “It’s really, I think, also these guys are in the midst of their season. They’re trying to finish up. That’s really it. We actually, in the last few weeks, just kind of got the official ruling that we could talk about them.”
He added, “We’ve been real focused on our season and none of you guys have asked me about them.”
Tajh Boyd will host Watson this weekend during his official visit.
“The guy is like a little brother to me, a really humble kid, super intelligent, and I love the personality he has. It’s more than football,” Boyd said. “I’m excited about the kind of person [Clemson] is getting coming in. He’s coming in early and we’ve got some guys that can really play right now, who’ve proved they can play right now. I think it’ll be an interesting competition for sure.”