Dabo Swinney Goes Nuclear On Caller For Questioning His $11.5 Million Salary: “I’ve Worked My A** Off Every Single Day”

Dabo Swinney wearing a hat and holding a book

Man, things just keep going from bad to worse for the Clemson Tigers football program.

This past Saturday, Clemson lost to NC State 24-17, falling to 4-4 on the season. This also marks their worst record, and first season with back to back losses since 2010. This also ends the Tigers’ streak of 12 straight 10 plus win seasons.

As a Clemson fan myself, it’s been brutal to watch this progressive downfall over the past three years, and it’s hard to see some silver lining for the future of the program. I don’t even know if they win another game this season to make a bowl after how they’ve played the last two games. Looking at the schedule, they still have to play Notre Dame, North Carolina, Georgia Tech (who beat UNC Saturday), and then in-state rival South Carolina on the road… it’s brutal.

Tons of fans are pointing the finger towards head coach Dabo Swinney, saying that his refusal to embrace NIL and the transfer portal has led to the decline of Clemson football. On top of that, many are also pointing out the fact that he hires former players as position coaches, who have no prior coaching experience.

Regardless of the reason, Clemson has appeared to lose that juice they had for seven years.

With that being said, one caller, who calls himself “Tyler from Spartanburg,” called into Swinney’s call-in show on Monday night to voice his frustration with Swinney’s decisions over the past few years, while also pointing to his $10.5 million salary…

Dabo Swinney Unleashes Epic Rant

And boy, to say Swinney wasn’t having it is an understatement.

In a fiery response, the head coach responded:

“You can have all your opinions you want, all right. I don’t know how old you are, don’t really care. Let me tell you something, we won eleven games last year, and you’re part of the problem to be honest with you, because that is part of the problem. It’s people like you.

The expectation is greater than the appreciation and that’s the problem. We’ve won twelve 10-plus seasons in a row, and that’s happened three times in 150 years. So if you wanna know why Clemson hasn’t sniffed a national championship in 35 years, we’ve won two in seven years, and there’s only two other teams that can say that, Georgia and Alabama. 

Is this a bad year? Yea, and I take 100% responsibility for it. But all this bull-crap your thinking and all these narratives you read, listen man you can have your opinion all you want and you can apply for the job. And good luck to you.”

He then went on to discuss the impressive run Clemson went on before the past few brutal years:

“It’s not just winning, it’s how you win. We’ve had twelve, ten-plus win seasons in a row, twelve. We lost to Tennessee last year, they won eleven games for the first time in like twenty years. We’ve had eight 11-win seasons in whatever, eleven years or whatever.

We’ve won two national championships. Clemson went 35 years, probably since before you were born, your whole freakin life and we’ve won two in seven years, and we earned it, beat the best of the best to do it. The best of the best.”

And he didn’t stop there… nope, he continued to rail on this kid for a whopping 5 straight minutes.

He continued:

“At some places there’s an expectation, but at Clemson there’s an appreciation. And what’s happened at Clemson is we’ve won so much, that even when it used to be the fun with the winning, now even when you win, people like YOU complain and criticize the coaches and question everything.

People like you, when I hired Tony Elliot as offensive coordinator, who never called plays in his life, I’m sure you were critical then. He took us to two national championships. People like you who just love to destroy people with your comments. I’m sure you’ve never made any bad decisions, I’m sure you’ve lived a perfect life, I’m sure you’ve led a bunch of people.

To answer your question, I started as the lowest paid coach in this business, and I’m where I am because I’ve worked my ass off every single day. I ain’t gonna let some smartass kid get on this phone and create this stuff. So if you got a problem with that, I don’t care.

I work for the Board of Trustees, the President and AD. And if they’re tired of me leading this program, I’ll go somewhere else where there is an appreciation.”

I think it’s safe to say Dabo is feeling the pressure.

Dabo Swinney agreed to a new 10-year, $115 million contract at the start of the 2022 season, the largest head coach contract by total compensation. Set to run through the 2031 football season, Dabo will average $11.5 million over 10 years. In 2023, Swinney will earn $10.8 million, just behind Alabama coach Nick Saban, who recently signed an extension that will pay him $11.4 million this season.

You can check out the full conversation here:

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock