Swinney dismisses preseason picks

BY foxsports • July 23, 2012

Dabo Swinney doesn't think much of preseason predictions.

"I've been the head coach for three years and I don't think we've bee picked to win the division, let alone the conference, and we've won the division twice in my three years," Swinney said at the ACC Kickoff after discovering his team was picked second in the Atlantic division.

The media's poor record of preseason picks aside, Swinney's main concern with all the chatter before the season is that it's essentially meaningless.

"It's fun to talk about and kinda gets everything going, but as I tell our players, all that stuff's based on what you did last year," Swinney said "The stuff that comes out in December is based on reality and performance."

That sentiment has been a bit of a theme for coaches this offseason. At SEC media days last week, Tennessee head coach Derek Dooley talked about chatter on Twitter effecting his players.

“Coaches used to shape the messages and shaped how a player thought and
they left and that's how a player thought," Dooley said. "Now we have three hours with
them to shape how they think and then they have 18 hours of reshaping by
someone else's opinion. So that is a challenge and I just think it's
important to stay connected to them, having a lot of dialogue and
recognizing how destructive worrying about the external fodder can be.”

Swinney had a similar message. "I think out guys have finally bought into, this is a game that's played on the field and what other people say or think in the preseason really is not a factor. There's a lot that goes into how it all plays out. We weren't ranked last year and we won the conference. It's really irrelevant."

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