Dabo Swinney Keys to Success in Football and Life

Dabo Swinney Keys to Success in Football and Life

Dabo Swinney has built himself quite the resume at the University of Clemson in a brief period of time. He took over as head coach in 2008 and was able to win a national title by 2016 and later again in 2018. That is no easy task in the NCAA where schools like Alabama, Texas, Notre Dame, and USC spare no expense when it comes down to football.

What has stood out about his job at Clemson is his ability to build a winning culture. People consider him to be rivals with Nick Saban which is no easy task considering how much success he has had. Dabo Swinney is the ultimate player’s coach. He has done all of this by staying true to some basic principles.

Dabo Swinney Rules to Success

Dabo Swinney

Run The Race to Win

Dabo Swinney has never backed down from talking about his Christian faith. He makes it clear to his team that they are playing to win though. He is not a doormat Christian, just waiting to be walked on either. Winning is what counts and he makes that clear!

Get The Little Things Right

How you do one thing is how you do everything, and Dabo Swinney continually preaches this concept to his players. If you slack off in class, you will slack off on the field. A lot of people think they can be many different ways in different places, but your true character will always rear its head. You have to be true to yourself at all times.

Live In The Gaps

Making your entire life about the significant events is straightforward.  Can you only feel like you are living when you win the national championship, getting married or having a kid? The reality is that life is about how you live in between the big moments.

Every day you need to show up and be someone remarkable. It does not matter if life is going your way or not. When you live right in the gaps, you get rewarded with success on the end.

Keep Moving Forward

There are going to be tough losses. There will be injuries and big setbacks that you have to deal with but so does everyone else. Everyone has to deal with problems in life. It is not about the issues you go through but how you respond to them.

Dabo Swinney has built a culture at Clemson that is obsessed with the next one. When you win, you don’t over celebrate, you go out and start working on getting the next win. There is never time to waste looking back in the mirror!

See The Vision Then Go Work

It always starts with a dream. Having the imagination to dream up something significant matters to Dabo Swinney. You have to see yourself holding that trophy in your hands. If you are not able to do that you will never be able to accomplish it in real life.

At the same time dreaming is not the only thing you have to do. After the dreaming, there is a lot of work and preparation that needs to be done. It is in your best interest to get on that right away. The dreaming is a natural step that a lot of people miss. The work is the hards stuff that most people avoid.

Love Others

The one thing that has made the culture at Clemson so unique is that Dabo Swinney continually is teaching his guys to love one another. It is a rare concept in the world of football which is all about tearing the next guys head off.

The Clemson coach wants aggression because they do play to win, but at the same time, he knows that nothing matters in this world more than how you love others. Love is a magical thing, and it has helped to change how the team operates.

Coach Profile


  • Head Coach of Clemson Tigers Football Team

Previous Positions

  • Alabama Assistant Coach
  • Clemson Assistant Coach

National Championships

  • Clemson 2016
  • Clemson 2018


  •  Eight years
  • $92M

Dabo Swinney Family

Dabo Swinney Family

  • Wife – Kathleen
  • Sons – Will, Drew, and Clay

Dabo Swinney Quotes

“To be an overachiever you have to be an over-believer.”

Dabo Swinney

“You can’t be afraid to play. Commit to play and you live with the results.” –  Dabo Swinney

“You’re never going to “(The Bible) says, love the Lord with all your heart, all your mind, all your soul. The second (rule) is, love your neighbor as you’d love yourself. It doesn’t say love your neighbor (if they’re) from the same religion. It doesn’t say love your neighbor if they’re the same color as you. It doesn’t say love your neighbor if they pull for the same team as you. It doesn’t say love your neighbor if they’re the same gender as you. (It doesn’t say) love your neighbor if they have the same sexuality as you. It just says, love your neighbor as you’d love yourself. If we all lived by that in this country, we wouldn’t have near the problems we have.”be a great program if you lose a game and your season’s over and you act like the world’s coming to an end; [like] none of the other games matter. That’s a bad attitude and you’re probably going to live a miserable life.”   – Dabo Swinney

Health is a Key to Success in Sports

9INE POINT Health is the best place to start your search for a health care provider to help you to stay healthy while you are working on being great like Dabo Swinney. 

Kho Health lets you search for providers by type and skill. For example, you can look for a Physical Therapist that also used to be an athlete. It does not matter what kind of provider you need, Kho Health can help you find them and help you to sort through their skills.

If you are unsure where to start your journey, 9INE POINT Health will ask you questions and help you figure out the best starting place. All you have to do is answer a few questions, and Kho Health will connect you with the type of provider best suited for your needs. It does not matter if you are injured or just sore.

The platform makes it easy to compare health providers as they are all given a 9INE POINT Number. Once you are shown the best local options, how do you know which is the best? Reading bios and reviews is just not enough because you need more than that.

Updated January 2020

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