Brownell Coaching In Shadow Of Nation's Top Football Program

JP-Priester

The ACC has long been known as the premier conference in college basketball, and for most coaches, trying to win in the league is a difficult task in its own regard. 

For Clemson head coach Brad Brownell, not only does he have to try and navigate the competitiveness of the conference year in and year out, he also has the added bonus of attempting to do so at a football school. 

As an added bonus, the Tigers are currently one of the nation's best football programs, having won two national titles over the past four years.

"We not only have football. We're pretty good at it down here," Brownell recently told Marcus Wilson on Details of Life. "Football is the king here, as it should be. We've had unbelievable success. It's a lot of fun."

While many coaches might possibly be intimidated by the thought of playing second fiddle to football on campus, Brownell is not. In fact, he sees it as an opportunity and tries to take advantage of the football program's success whenever he can. 

"We try to help each other a little bit in recruiting," Brownell said. "Football weekends are a blast. We certainly try to use those weekends for recruiting visits. Give people a taste of what life is like here at Clemson."

Brownell and Dabo Swinney are pretty close these days. It's a friendship that has been well documented over the years, and one that is conducive to the overall well-being of the two programs. 

The two head coaches being so close actually makes it a little easier for the two coaching staffs to get along and interact with one another. 

"Coach Swinney and his staff, we really get along with those guys well," Brownell said. "A lot of people don't know, but Dabo was a high school basketball player. And he still loves to play. He's got almost a half court in his house.

"He's (Swinney) a huge basketball guy. Tries to come to as many games as he can. He's been great to us."

Football school or not, Brownell has always made it known how fond he is of Clemson. It's that passion that makes the university such a special place.

"I love being in Clemson," Brownell said. "I love the fact that our people are as passionate as they are. As much as anything, what separates Clemson, makes it special, are just great people. We all respect each other."

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