When Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney offered a scholarship to safety Nolan Turner last week, the move meant much more to everyone involved than just football.
The offer came completely out of the blue for Turner, an Alabama native and the son of Kevin Turner, a former teammate of Swinney who is battling ALS. Before offering the scholarship to the younger Turner in person, Swinney visited Kevin, who uses a ventilator and feeding tube.
Kevin, who played fullback at Alabama from 1988 to ’92, was diagnosed with ALS in 2010.
Turner, who had planned to walk on at Alabama, committed to Clemson on the spot after receiving the offer.
“I sat down with Dabo, and he started explaining to me how they had two of their safeties leave for the draft and another just transferred, and he was talking about how that opened up a scholarship,” Turner said. “He told he was offering me a full scholarship to come play at Clemson. I didn’t know what to say. I was speechless.”
Turner also holds a scholarship offer from UAB and was previously offered a preferred walk-on spot at Clemson as a Junior.