The sun shined Sunday on what was an unfortunate sidebar to the annual rivalry game between South Carolina and Clemson.
USC junior defensive lineman Dante Sawyer, who after the game referenced a racial slur being used, said Sunday via Twitter that Clemson senior offensive lineman Jay Guillermo contacted him.
“with all the tension following the game @Jay_Guillermo57 reached out about the situation, received all my respect,” Sawyer posted Sunday on his Twitter page.
During South Carolina’s 56-7 loss to Clemson on Saturday night, one of the Tigers’ offensive linemen used a racial slur toward a Gamecocks defensive lineman, South Carolina linebacker Bryson Allen-Williams said after the game.
“They used the n-word, one of their offensive linemen. I don’t know which number,” Allen-Williams said.
Allen-Williams on Sunday, via Twitter, expressed appreciation that Guillermo reached out to Sawyer: “That’s real, really respect that from him!”
Wide receiver Terry Googer, who was visibly upset after the game, said this on Twitter Saturday night: “Never thought I would hear so many racial slurs in my life!! Classless is not a strong enough word to describe the actions!”
On Sunday, Googer said it was fans, not players, with the unkind words.
“My experience was with fans! I can’t speak for any other player on my team,” he tweeted.
Most players who said Clemson’s conduct in the late going of the game “disrespectful” were referencing in-game celebrations. Clemson started pulling starters with more than 18 minutes to go, then the Tigers used back-to-back timeouts to give seniors and departing juniors a curtain call as the game wound down.
Moving forward, head coach Will Muschamp said the Gamecocks (6-6) will have time off for exams next week and will determine when to start bowl practice based on when they’re scheduled to play.
“They’ll get two lifts next week and then they start exams and won’t have anything football-wise as far as that’s concerned,” Muschamp said.