No Two-A-Days, No Problem For Clemson

Clemson head football coach Dabo Swinney says the first time he tasted water during a practice was his senior year of high school.

Dabo Swinney is one coach who is in favor of the NCAA legislation that was passed in April mandating no more two-a-day practices when both practices involve contact.

The new rules allows for one regular practice and one walk-through practice. Players are not allowed wear helmets or pads in the walk-through which also can not include conditioning.

Swinney recalled his days playing high school ball in Pelham, Alabama where today's rules would have drawn laughter from coaches back then. In his high school career, water breaks at practice were nonexistent.

"I didn't get water until my senior year of high school," Swinney said.

The Clemson head coach says unlike today's protocols which feature plenty of water breaks for proper hydration, his high school coach saw water breaks as a sign of weakness.

'Water? Man, you get water, you're weak", Swinney said of the attitude back in the day.

Not only was water a rare sight at practice, two-a-day workouts were the norm with salt tablets provided to get the players through the demanding workouts.

Swinney says his high school head coach and trainer got into a heated argument over hydration with the coach finally relenting, giving the players a five-minute water break.

Once Swinney got to Alabama, he had water whenever he needed it. But two-a-day workouts continued. Swinney said everyone did it because, well, everyone did it and didn't know of the potential dangers.

Last season, Swinney recalled just one two-a-day session for his team. 

"I'm embarrassed to call it a two-a-day," Swinney said.

"Coach Stallings would be very disappointed in me. It was like a Club Med two-a-day."

Swinney says there is some adjustment with the new rules in terms of mandated days off, but in terms of no two-a-day workouts, Swinney says that's an easy adjustment for his staff to make in terms of scheduling. The only difference is the players can't be brought it for football meetings on a day off from practice. Swinney says he's always given his players a day off from football.

 

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