Dabo Swinney may not be the most popular person in his home state of Alabama anymore, but there’s no question the Clemson coach is more popular there — or anywhere — than the person he compared himself to in an interview earlier this year.
Swinney, a native of Pelham, Ala., played college football as a receiver at Alabama and later started his coaching career as an assistant with the Crimson Tide. He eventually went to Clemson, where he worked his way up from receivers coach in 2002 to head coach in 2008.
According to TigerNet.com’s David Hood, who dug up the months-old interview for an article published Monday, Swinney used a rather odd analogy in his response.
“I am kinda like Osama bin Dabo,” Swinney said with a laugh. “I have to navigate my way through the caves and back channels to make my way through Alabama these days. They aren’t happy to see me.”
There’s probably a lot of people that folks in Alabama aren’t happy to see. But for some reason Swinney decided to compare himself to the leader of Al Qaeda, the terrorist network responsible for the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
Swinney’s comments flew under the radar when he first made them. But after resurfacing in Hood’s article, they are now being blasted by some as being insensitive to those who lost their lives because of Osama bin Laden, who was hunted for years before being killed by U.S. forces in 2011.
I recently saw a reply made by a veteran calling this a "non-story". You can speak for yourself, but you can't speak for the hundreds of thousands that lost their lives. This IS a story, and Dabo Swinney should be ashamed of himself. https://t.co/9mlAl8Iuxz
Dabo Swinney calling himself "Osama bin Dabo" is inexcusable, horrendous, and shows an incredible lack of knowledge on a topic that many feel is the darkest day in this country’s history.https://t.co/D1OfoAp0Ty