Steve Spurrier explains why he takes so many shots at Clemson

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Sunday January 19, 2014

Steve Spurrier always knows how to play to his crowd. More than anything else, South Carolina fans love his jabs at Clemson.

The South Carolina football team was honored at halftime of the basketball game on Saturday, and Spurrier was up to his usual game.

He talked about 11-win seasons, New Year’s Day bowl wins and 18 straight home wins, but his comment about Clemson drew the largest cheer.

“Another streak we’ve got, it’s not a three-year streak, it’s not a four-year, it’s five-year,” he said, emphatically. “We’ve been fortunate to beat that orange team from upstate five straight years, pretty convincingly.”

He introduced some players, and had a special line for receiver Bruce Ellington.

“He not only caught two big ones against Missouri in that overtime win against Florida, he’s caught three against Clemson in his career,” Spurrier said. That’s three more than their first-round pick (Sammy Watkins).”

After his speech, Spurrier spoke with media and said it’s all in good fun. Spurrier and Dabo Swinney have both said they have a good relationship behind the scenes. They just both love to fire up their fans.

After winning the Capital One Bowl, Spurrier said it’s almost as good as winning the state championship. Swinney responded after the Orange Bowl by saying it was the state’s first BCS win.

“I don’t think we throw much. I think y’all blow that up,” Spurrier told reporters. “Obviously, our fans love beating Clemson. The old-time Gamecock fans suffered for years and years, as we all know. So they’re enjoying it. They should enjoy it. They’ve been on the short stick most of the time. I’m talking to our people. I’m not talking just to talk. It’s for our people. It’s not for the other school’s people.

“When Dabo talks, it’s for his people. It doesn’t bother me. I can assure you. That’s what we do in the offseason. We have to talk a little bit. I’m talking to the Gamecocks. The other people shouldn’t listen to me.”

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News,, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to