As the calendar turns to August, numerous teams around college football began their preparations for the 2017 season with the start of fall practice.


While the 2016 SEC champion Alabama Crimson Tide hit the practice field Thursday, another participant in the past two national title games started practice Thursday.

Clemson looks to win their third consecutive ACC title as they set sail on the 2017 season against Kent State.

To close out the week, Clemson head football coach Dabo Swinney provided a glimpse into his team’s upcoming season on Inside the Locker Room.

Even though Clemson secured their first national championship since 1981 with a win over Alabama back in January, the Tigers are one of just two teams to notch 10 or more wins in every season since 2011. The head coach of the Tigers attributes his program’s success to one trait.

“The reason we’ve been so consistent is we start over every year.” Swinney said. “It don’t matter if we won that last one with a second on the clock or we got beat in that last one. We don’t assume anything.”

The biggest question that faces the Tigers this season is replacing one of their all-time best signal callers in Deshaun Watson.

Junior Kelly Bryant, true freshman Hunter Johnson and redshirt freshman Zerrick Cooper are the top candidates to be Watson’s successor at quarterback. Swinney expressed confidence in the potential of all three quarterbacks.

“We’re not choosing from the best of the bad. We’ve got some good guys, and we recruited them here because we thought they were great players, and they fit what we do.” Swinney said.

Over the past two seasons, Clemson and Alabama have risen to the spotlight as college football’s top two programs. Swinney summarized his thoughts on playing Alabama at the end of the 2015 and 2016 college football seasons and Nick Saban’s appreciation for great competition.

“Coach Saban appreciates great competition. It was a great game. We made a couple more plays this year than they did. Year before, they made a few more than we did. I think he had great respect for Deshaun Watson and our team and the way we do things here.” Swinney said.

Catch Inside the Locker Room every weekday from 7-9 AM on Tide 102.9/100.9 and the radioPup app.