Duke 28 Clemson 7: Dabo Swinney's postgame Q&A from Duke lossSep 05, 2023
self-inflicted wounds oh man, they're all, they're all disappointing, you know, I mean, every
lossI've ever had is disappointing, um, they're all, they're all disappointing, nobody, we hate losing, you know, certainly, this. it's a bad way to start and as you know they are a good football team we have no right to win we have to win it and we had plenty of opportunities to take control of that game on multiple occasions and you just didn't do it and when you know that's how they beat you so how come how are you 108? No, you know, and then you lose one, well, okay, crazy things happen, you know, turnovers, blocking kicks, uh, just mistakes on some basic things at first.
In the game, I thought we settled in defensively in the second half, but early in the game, you know, the first game was met with some missed tackles, some fundamental things, we had a couple of poor angles and we lost the route of the wheel twice without anything we had. I'm not ready for that, but again I thought we had a lot of opportunities, like I said, to take control of the game and win it, but we couldn't get out of our own way and you know you have to finish, but again, there's nothing we can do. about it now other than trying to get a win this week and, you know, see if we can, you know, put some good momentum together, yeah, yeah, they didn't raise the flag. the flag counted, but what you know is that they made the right decision, um and yeah, absolutely, I mean, absolutely, that's a learning situation for Kate, he has to get the first down and he easily could have gotten it, uh, but once you start, The rule is once you start sliding, you're down, so he started his slide a little short, so he's down and then the penalty, so it's a dead ball penalty . 15 yards, you know his ball, but it's after the play. penalty, so you know, I mean, they made the right decision and, uh, but yeah, it's a, I mean, listen, Kade is going to be a great player, uh, but he certainly has some learning, learning, things of tonight and that's something you know, hopefully it will fall. away not only for his time here, but for the rest of his career playing football, hopefully, that's something he'll really learn from his situational awareness and, uh, you just know you've got to go get him. here as you've seen on As difficult as it was or not, I thought we were well matched, I mean, I mean, I thought we were going to be able to run the ball, we did, um, I thought we could win the faceoff up front, um and again, we, I'm serious.
It's almost indescribable, uh, what I just saw, I mean, it's incredibly frustrating, uh, when you have so many opportunities and you know, I mean, you just don't get anything, so you know you don't. I didn't think there were any bad matchups. or something like that, they're a good team, they're good players, and you know, they held on, but I thought we were taking control there in the third quarter, but we just couldn't get out. we just needed a boost, a score and finally, you know, I just mean, you can't keep giving a good team chances, sooner or later, you know, they capitalized and they did it and obviously the turnover there with my phone was The only one. that was huge because, you know, they brought it all the way back and got a shortstop right there and hit it so that did it, I guess that wouldn't make it 21, there it was 21 and you.
I know if we don't have the two missed chip shop field goals, it's 21-13, it's still a one-score game, you know, so there's just a lot of missed opportunities, but you know, as far as the matchup , I would say the biggest disappointment was, you know. right, the opening drive in the third quarter when we got them for a tfl, I mean we know two of our best players and we got them, I mean we got them with dead righties, tfl and man, that quarterback just of doing. great play, I mean, he just broke the tackle and went and scored and I mean, I can't say enough about that kid, I mean, he played a great game, with a lot of heart, a lot of grit, um, he made some runs and timely races, but none bigger than that.
I mean, that touchdown was huge and again we got at least at least I'm limited to a field goal right there, so, but you know, matchup. As for that, I thought we agreed. Well, we just didn't run it, well, yeah, there are problems that caught you off guard from your boy, um no, I mean, I didn't, um, I mean, I was disappointed that we got arrested on the wheel route. twice, um. I know that wasn't something that we hadn't practiced um and uh you know I was. I was disappointed that we missed a couple of easy tackles at the start but nothing you know, we weren't prepared, it's not again, it's not how we did it.
That is, if you really watch the game, you know what happened in the game and we just worked on our own in some critical situations and again you have to finish and it was routine stuff, I mean the basics, the basics, the fundamentals, already You know, ball handling. uh, just some basic basic things, not jumping offside on first and goal from the first, uh, you know basic things and you know, that's, you know, it's just that it's once again, it's the strangest game I've ever played. been part. I mean, I've gotten my ass beat many times in my career, but I can't, I can honestly say no.
That's one of the strangest games I've ever played. You guys didn't take deep hits. Design's field passing games, well, if not, we took a couple, but they just played everything on top of us, you know, and that's what we know, so we knew we could run the ball and we did, uh, You know they were going to do it. They were going to bend but not break if you did it again if you look at the structure of the things they were doing. We made a deep shot and they had a great deep safety and you know we were lucky right there, but we knew what.
We had to do it, but we did it, but okay, let's see if they can finish and we couldn't get away with it and again we got a lot of yards and a lot of first downs and really good start for third down, uh 7-15, but we didn't get any points. . I brought up the points of the game and again, it's just basic routine stuff that we didn't do, so um, I, maybe I'd feel better if we went out and got high. you know, and we were, you know, one of 11 on third down and we got high in the run game and you know whatever, but I mean, that's not what happened, what happened was they held on and finished better than us in the critic. place that we needed to do and you have to give credit to Duke and for that because again, you know they could have been a little bit but they didn't break down in the end and we didn't finish and you look up and and you know they beat you, just mistakes and mistakes critical, critical and critics, and you know, it's kind of heartbreaking, man.
I mean, you work really hard as a kid. I love his team, though I mean, I really love him. I love this team. I love the staff and you know we have to stay together, we have to recover and get back to work, you know, I mean, I know a lot of people will probably abandon us and abandon us and kick us out. away, but man, I'm not going to quit and I'm not going to waste this team, uh, we're going to bounce back and we're going to get better, we're going to learn from it. I love the kids in the locker room and and you know we'll stay together and get back to work it's easy to lose and all this on the night we had 6.7 yards to carry six receptions, including the first touchdown reception of his career uh you play very strongly tonight, right?
Yeah, I mean, again, it put us in position, that did all it could do and, again, there's a lot of good things, but again, the name of the game is points if we hit a couple of us. We're probably having a different conversation, but we weren't and I had to give them credit, so all we can do is move forward and see if we can win one this week, this Saturday, it's a little less than a five turnaround days is that help in the sense that you can put this aside and refocus and get ready for the next one and you know, just settle those guys in and get ready to get back to work once you get there.
Back to Clemson, you probably know, I mean, these guys will probably be eager to get back to playing and, uh, this is going to sting and leave a bad taste in our mouths for a while, but again, you know, everyone has a decision to make to you. knowing that it's half full or half empty that's the decision you have to make and uh you know for me it's half full it always has been always will be you know that's the only thing I control is how I think and how I respond and um and that's it You know, we're going to have a good practice tomorrow, so yeah, it's like a Sunday for us, but it's Tuesday in the real world and we have to clean this up and I have to get back to work.
There has been a lot of football, a lot of football and we have a difficult schedule. We have a lot of fantastic teams that we are going to play this year. It will be a great opportunity for this team. Sure and, you know, hopefully we'll look back at the end of the year and this will be a head-scratching game and you know that, but it made us better, you know, and that's the choice everyone has to make. The news is I think we have a really talented team and I think we have a team that cares, the team that they have is made of the right stuff and this is, we'll go, we'll figure it out, you know as we go. and navigate the schedule, but I definitely think you know go back to work tomorrow, uh, Tuesday and, uh, man, let's see if we can, you know, go back to work and find a way and listen.
I, you know, we have something amazing. fans our fans were amazing and you know they're passionate and I know they're incredibly disappointed like they should be and mean and angry because you know we let them down, we didn't make it, but I hope they do. We'll also hang in there with each other, you know, and um, you know, we've got to stay together and we've got to go for a win this week, a win this week and see if we can keep moving forward, low kicks, I think that's what everyone does. in the Box was telling me that's pretty much what the replay showed, so we'll break it down and you know once we see it, but it was obviously a disappointing start for him as well.
I just told him, you know, first of all. I love him and man this is a tough position, you know what you signed up for and you know there are going to be much better days for that kid. I mean, he's a winner, he's a great competitor and you know he's He's just going to get better, and I know you know, again, there's going to be a lot of anger and this and that, but this kid is going to play football for a long time. and it's made of the right material, so you know. he just has to lead and learn from it, you know, like you would if, even if we had won the game, we still had, you know, a lot of things that we need to grow and get better at, but, you know, I just loved him and that It's all he can do, I mean, he's hurt, I mean, he's again nobody, nobody has worked harder than that kid and he's prepared and for some reason there were some routine things tonight that didn't go the way we wanted. um, but I know the type of kid he is and I know it's tough and I know he's going to bounce back and continue to lead and I think these guys are going to bounce back.
Again it's a very disappointing locker room, but I cheered myself up. What I saw in that locker room from the guys is that, you know, they got a lead and then you know you're going to focus strictly on Charleston Southern and Mexican, but I mean, can you see a path to the playoffs with this team? After a night like tonight, I'm just trying to win the next game, that's the only path I want to take. I think you just hang your head which way to win this game tonight. You know there is nothing different. We have to go. win this week, you know, this is college football, anything can happen, you know, but nothing's going to happen, and if you don't, if you don't fix some of the things we did tonight, then we don't do it. will.
Don't we just have to focus on trying to win a game and go from there? You know, we know we have 12 chances to play and we'll get what we earn after that, so you know we've got to keep moving forward. any questions for the Zoom coach part of what kind of did yes, that was an incredible bright spot. I mean, we've seen a lot of great things from TJ, you know, since he got here in January, that's what we expected him to do. he plays well and I think he's a guy that for sure has a bright future and you know I'm looking forward to seeing him continue to build on what he did tonight so a lot of good things about TJ again we'll see the tape but you noticed it a lot I mean , he's a very active player and then what did you say about Kate?
I'm sorry, what was the first part, well, I mean, she put us in position, uh, but. but again, we just didn't do it, we didn't finish and you know, it's that simple. I mean, there are a lot of situational things that he has to do a better job at. I thought at the beginning, maybe the first trip, the first series, maybe. um, you know, he missed a pool, um, that probably would have gone a little far, uh he ended upbeing a no play tackle, maybe a guy ran us over from behind and he just has to do the routine things, um, a little bit sharper and then. obviously again the situational things like the fourth and the eighth and making sure we understand that, I mean, we're still in the game right there, uh, so it was an expensive deal, um, but it did a lot of good things, I mean, again , he's a brave kid, he's a tough guy, um, he never gave up and, uh, man.
I'm glad I caught him and, uh, because I know, I know, I know who he is, I know what he's made of and I know how he's going to respond. Well, we'll watch the tape on who did some good things there too. Again it was a situation where again they were playing a lot of coverage and we had to hit some things underneath, which we did, we had a big drop, I think it was Antonio there with a pretty big drop, I think it was just before fourth-and-eight, that would have gotten the first down or gotten fourth in one or whatever, it's a play we have to make, but you know we did some, we did some good things, but again, I mean, we threw for 200 more. , we rushed for 200 more, so we did a lot of good things that indicate success, but what we didn't do was finish in the red zone and, um, and take care of the ball, that's how it was.
It's not good enough, so everyone has to own that and we have to improve from it. We talked a lot the other day about that goal award and the goal of winning the first game. How do you get to the rest of those? The goals fell short on the first one, well, if the good Lord wakes us up tomorrow, if we have a safe trip back, you know, just get back to work. I mean, that's how you move on. I mean, that's what happens. In life yes, what happens, that's what football teaches you. I mean, you get knocked down, you have to keep moving, you get up when life, when life knocks you down, you get up, you know, you don't stay down, don't let it define you or destroy you, let it develop you, you know, and that's a choice, that's a decision, so that's what we have to do, we have to let this develop us into the kind of team that we can be and, you know, the only thing we know we can't do is be undefeated, we can have a great year, we know we can't be undefeated, but you know, that's for sure, but you know what we can win this week if we do it.
We'll clean some things up and we'll grow from this moment so you just have to make a decision you know God is still good he's still half full and you know you have a great future ahead of you that's a decision you have to make that's right As you move forward, yes, we haven't had any of those problems in practice, it's literally ball handling. I mean, we had some critical mistakes right there, it's ball handling, it's ball security. right angle, it's just tackling, you know, scallop technique, here, you know, we had a couple of times where we broke down too early and, you know, then it's just getting back to practicing, getting back to the basics, you know, the Basic things, nothing, that's the good thing.
The good news is, if there's any good news, you know you didn't see a horrible football team tonight, you saw a bad result, but you didn't see a horrible football team, uh, that, that can't play the game. You know, we, this, everything is correctable, you know, that's the good news, you know, we needed to do some things from the beginning, we did. I think we're going to like what we saw from the beginning, obviously, I had a couple of mistakes, um, we needed to be able to, you know, get the game running. We were able to do it.
There were a lot of positives in the game but we just didn't take advantage when we had the opportunities and ultimately that determines whether you win. or lose and Duke deserves all the credit for that last one on Zoom, he agreed, I mean he was frustrated like me, I'd probably tell you the same thing, I've never been a part of a game like that, it's incredibly frustrating, but To me, but I liked his poise, you know, he kept going and stayed positive and kept encouraging the guys and I mean, we'd get back on the field and you'd know we'd have a mistake there.
So, um, but I thought I'd know again, he gave us a chance to win the game and he gave us a chance to hit him a few times and we just didn't do it, so, um, it's really really strange. and a disappointing game, but I thought he did a good job, I mean, he's been really good for us and I loved his demeanor and his presence and his poise throughout the game, you know, he never, he, never, ever, um you. I know I lost hope or something and I like how he responded to the guys and, you know, he knows we have a chance to be a good group and not the start we wanted again, we have a lot of yards and stats and all that, but we got our asses beat and the name of the game is, you know, finish when we have opportunities, so, um, but uh, we'll all get back to work and see if we can find a way. this week
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