Following Clemson’s 56-7 spanking of South Carolina in this year’s Palmetto Bowl, the Post and Courier reported that Gamecock linebacker Bryson Allen-Williams accused a Tiger lineman of calling a fellow teammate a n*gger.
“They called one of our defensive linemen, they used the N-word. An offensive lineman, I don’t know his number. … We’re going to get our get-back. Next year we play them in Williams-Brice Stadium, and we’re definitely going to have that game circled.”
When speaking to reporters after the story was published instead of addressing what could potentially be a very serious issue, Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney ripped the media for even reporting the accusation.
Here's Dabo ripping the media for making an alleged racial slur the story from the game instead of Clemson's dominance of it: pic.twitter.com/vEidZFyOcO
— Larry Williams (@LarryWilliamsTI) November 29, 2016
It is our job as sports journalist to report the good, bad and ugly. If we were to only focus on the good and ignore everything else we would be doing a disservice to our readers. Instead of deflecting from the issue and using the media as a scapegoat, Swinney should’ve acknowledged the report and said that the university will be looking into the allegation and reinforced the fact that the football program has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to that type of offensive behavior. Instead, he practically said he’d give a pass to the lineman (“I give young people some grace”), while telling the “adult” media they’re wrong for writing the story in the first place. Given his reaction to Colin Kaepernick’s protest and this, I think a sensitivity class and PR person would do Dab some good.