Posted February 19, 2014

Steve Spurrier on Jadeveon Clowney’s work ethic: ‘It was OK’

Jadeveon Clowney, Steve Spurrier
Jadeveon Clowney

South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney had a lot of hype, but he was disappointing in 2013.  (Scott Halleran/Getty)

Jadeveon Clowney might have some work to do off the field — at least according to his former college coach.

South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier told the NFL Network on Wednesday that Clowney wasn’t the hardest-working player on his college roster.

“It was OK,” Spurrier said, when asked about Clowney’s work ethic. “It wasn’t like Marcus Lattimore, you know, every player is a little different. But when the ball’s snapped, he’s got an explosion like you’ve never seen before.”

As Clowney prepares to become a potential top-five pick in the upcoming NFL draft, critics have pointed to his lackadaisical attitude off the field as a possible road block to becoming a successful pro. After an October game against Kentucky in which Clowney did not play, Spurrier made headlines when he told reporters, “If [Clowney] wants to play, we will welcome him to come play for the team if he wants.”

But Spurrier was not just critical of Clowney on Wednesday. The Gamecocks’ coach made it known that Clowney still has all the tools necessary to succeed at the next level.

“Jadeveon Clowney has been here three years,” Spurrier said. “I think the biggest thing you can say right away is we’ve won 11 games three years in a row since he got here. In high school, his team won a state championship … so he’s been a winner as well as being the most dominant defensive player on the field all the time. Even though his production this year wasn’t near what it was last year, he had two or three guys waiting on his just about every play.”

SI.com’s Don Banks projects Clowney as the third overall pick in his latest NFL Mock Draft.

18 comments
dchiu2013
dchiu2013

He is going to be a great NFL player like J. Peppers, Mario Williams, D. Ware ability but faster.  I will say he is the 2nd coming of  the greatest linebacker- Lawrence Taylor and he wasn't an angel off the field. Who cares what he does outside of football as long as he produces every game just like LT !

Matthew W
Matthew W

Getting by on natural talent alone works in High School and College.....but it only goes so far in the NFL. 


If he has just an "OK" work ethic, he won't last long in the league.

ianlinross
ianlinross

Least Spurrier is honest.  Urban Meyer sold Belichick a bill of goods on Chad Jackson. 

mystafugee
mystafugee

I'm with Steve since his judgement on NFL matters was just so precise.  Just ask the Redskins.  

AF Whigs
AF Whigs

I've gotta believe that Spurrier wouldn't have said this if he didn't have strong reservations.  He's not trying to hurt Clowney, but he's obviously not trying to sugar coat anything, either.  If it was a tossup he would've just said Clowney's work ethic was great.

KerryMurphy
KerryMurphy

what did clowney do to give anybody the impression he's not a 'character guy?' sheesh.

Listening
Listening

He has the ability.  If he gets a bunch of money up front (which he will), who knows what this kid will do.

PhillyPenn
PhillyPenn

He's a mid-first round pick, not top 5 or 10.  

BigFoot3434
BigFoot3434

@SInow -Talking like this about your players won't help recruiting. I would I want to play for Spurrier.

JohnnyNacho
JohnnyNacho

SHOW ME THE MONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Purple Drank...

The_truth_hurts
The_truth_hurts

This guy will be a bust. All he wants is money. He will get fat and lazier after he gets a contract.

dchiu2013
dchiu2013

@PhillyPenn  and u are stupid to think there are 10 college players better than Clowney.

Marty2
Marty2

@The_truth_hurts  If character counts, I'd be leery of this guy.  I understand he needed to protect his future, but a lot of "sure things" have handled it better knowing a lucrative pro career awaited.