Clemson football coach Dabo Swinney is speaking out against the rising number of sexual misconduct allegations mounting against his former star quarterback Deshaun Watson.
Swinney said he is “disappointed” in the allegations, but continues to offer his full support to Watson, who he coached from 2014-2016.
A total of 14 women have filed lawsuits against Watson with allegations of sexual misconduct and assault, with attorney Tony Buzbee saying the number of women filing suits against Watson could continue to grow past 20.
For Swinney, it is surprising to see the number of women coming out against his former quarterback.
“[I was] disappointed to see his name in the news and all that’s going on .. but hey, look, I love Deshaun Watson,” Swinney said, as transcribed by TMZ Sports. “He’s like a son to me. That’s how I love him. As far as the legal stuff and all that … that will take its course.
“Certainly can’t speculate or comment on any of that stuff, but all I can tell you is I’ve known Deshaun since the 9th grade and he’s been nothing but exemplary in every area that I’ve ever known him in.
“In the 3 years that he was here as a player, I think I had a chance to yell at him one time. He was 5 minutes late to a team meeting that he overslept for. That’s it. That’s the Deshaun I know. I can only base my thoughts on my experiences with him, which have been wonderful. Again, I love him like a son, and we’ll just have to see where everything else goes from there.”
The Texans and NFL have acknowledged they are aware of the allegations, but there has been no further comment.