Radakovich Q and A sneak preview No. 1: Talking Dabo, Leggett and Brownell
A fresh Q and A with first-year Clemson Athletic Director Dan Radakovich will run in the Post and Courier print edition Sunday (with an even longer version posted at www.postandcouier.com the same day).
In this first of two sneak previews, Radakovich talks about Clemson’s three most prominent coaches:
How about the contrast of Dabo Swinney as the rival from Georgia Tech days and all those close games, and now as your head coach?
You always knew you had to come with your “A” game to play Clemson’s football team because Dabo would have them prepared and Clemson would play hard for 60 minutes. I love his competitiveness. I love the way he pulls his team together and has a singular focus. I’m glad I’m on their side now.
Jack Leggett has set such a high standard for Clemson baseball that not hosting a Regional last year was seen as slippage. What do see as the Clemson baseball standard?
When you look beneath the surface of baseball, schools are not on a level playing field. Private schools, for instance, with the 11.7 scholarships may be able to give more non-athletic aid. Some states, like Georgia, have better in-state tuition programs for student-athletes. That’s why I look at what Jack has done and say he is a great competitor who puts a phenomenal baseball team out on the field.
Brad Brownell is known as a good floor coach, and a great guy. But Rick Barnes and Oliver Purnell before him had programs that gradually improved, Brad’s record is going in the opposite direction. Are you concerned about that going into a bigger, better ACC with Louisville, Syracuse and Pittsburgh coming in?
Not at all. You have to look at where everyone started. Brad came in and had a roster that wasn’t set up very well for the next few years. After that first year, some of that began to catch up. What we see with a team with 11 freshmen and sophomores is a really good base that may not manifest itself in 2013-14 but may in 2014-15. Look at Tom Crean at Indiana. They moved backward and now they’re moving forward. I believe in Brad. I believe he’s a very good coach and he does it the right way. I think we have to give him the tools. We have to say, “Basketball is important at Clemson.”
Reach Gene Sapakoff at 937-5593 or on Twitter @sapakoff