Clemson suspends three players for playoffs after unspecified violations

Deon Cain, Al Harris Jr.

Clemson’s Deon Cain pulls in a 55-yard pass for a touchdown while defended by South Carolina’s Al Harris Jr. on Nov. 28.

(Richard Shiro / Associated Press)

Clemson Coach Dabo Swinney said Wednesday that he has sent three players home from the Orange Bowl for violating team rules.

Receiver Deon Cain, kicker Ammon Lakip and tight end Jay Jay McCullough were suspended this week.

Swinney didn’t say what the players did wrong. He would only say “when you don’t do the right thing, there are consequences to pay.”

All three players are backups, but the loss of Cain is a blow to the passing game. He had 34 catches for 582 yards and five touchdowns this season.


Lakip handled some extra points for the Tigers. McCullough played sparingly and had yet to make a catch.

If the Tigers win Thursday’s game against Oklahoma, Swinney says all three players will remain suspended for the national championship game.

Swinney says Cain could return the Tigers next season “if he grows up and does what he needs to do. If he doesn’t, he won’t.”

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