We are 23 days away from Ohio State and Clemson meeting in the Fiesta Bowl as part of the College Football Playoff. Urban Meyer and Dabo Swinney’s teams will meet in the primetime matchup on New Year’s Eve.
But on Thursday evening, Meyer, Swinney and the other two coaches leading teams in the CFP — Alabama’s Nick Saban and Washington’s Chris Petersen — met for a joint press conference in Atlanta.
Meyer’s thoughts on his team’s matchup with the Tigers can be seen here. What did Swinney have to say about the Buckeyes? Let’s check out some highlights.
- Swinney's opening statement: “You obviously don’t get to this point without having a great staff and having a great team. We’re honored to be back in it. It was a great experience for us last year and I’m proud of our team for having a great season this year and earning an opportunity to go compete with these three other great teams.”
- Swinney was asked about quarterback Deshaun Watson and whether or not he agrees with when the voting for the Heisman Trophy is done. “I really haven’t given it any thought," he said. "I’ve never spent a lot of time worrying about when they vote on that stuff. I’m glad he’s been honored as a finalist for two years in a row."
- Swinney was asked what he learned from his first trip to the CFP. “Came into it somewhat blind last year but it was a great experience," he said. "Our guys were able to somewhat enjoy the bowl experience and I thought the CFP folks did a great job with the structure of it. We had great preparation. … Most times you go to the bowl game you win the game you move on. Now, you’ve gotta load up and come back and get ready for the national championship so we learned a lot.”
- Swinney on Ohio State's offense and quarterback J.T. Barrett: “They’re a tempo team with a lot of shifts and motions. They’re going to run their quarterback, but he's surrounded by a great cast. Two really good football teams and we’ve got a lot of respect for Ohio State."