Home | Facebook | LinkedIn | Twitter | Our Fan Newsletter
GwdToday | Greenwood, SC
News
• Greenwood
• Lakelands
• School
• State
Sports
• Local Sports
• Collegiate
Classifieds
• Newest Listings
• Employment
• Merchandise
• Real Estate
• Recreation
• Transportation
• Yard Sales
Marketplace
• Promotions
• Featured Events
• Business Spotlight

Crime Network
• Arrest Reports
• Most Wanted
• SC Sex Offenders
His Section
• Church News & Events
• Prayer Request
Obituaries
• Obituaries
• Notices
Occasions
• Birthdays
• Weddings / Anniv / Engagements
• Reunions
Specials
• Letters to Editor
• GwdToday Contest
• Announcements



home : sports : local sports July 24, 2014



Swearinger still hitting hard
Former Eagle, Gamecock star preparing for NFL Draft Combine
Greenwood native D.J. Swearinger celebrates after returning an interception 69 yards for a touchdown in a game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Williams-Brice Stadium. Swearinger is currently training for the NFL Scouting Combine later this month. (Photo courtesy of the University of South Carolina)
+ click to enlarge
Greenwood native D.J. Swearinger celebrates after returning an interception 69 yards for a touchdown in a game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Williams-Brice Stadium. Swearinger is currently training for the NFL Scouting Combine later this month. (Photo courtesy of the University of South Carolina)

Jacob Lethco
Staff Writer


Certain athletes are born with certain characteristics that set them apart from other players. Some are faster than most any other player, others stronger than most.

For former Greenwood High School and University of South Carolina Gamecock star D.J. Swearinger, a unique blend of hard work and confidence has defined him as a player throughout his career, earning him the nickname “Swag.”  Following a four year career as a standout for the Gamecocks, the hard-hitting free safety has been invited to the 2013 NFL Draft Scouting Combine, to be held in Indianapolis, Ind., beginning Feb. 23.

“I was just born with that,” Swearinger said with a laugh. “Some people are born with certain things, and I was born with that confidence, that swagger on the field, and that’s where the nickname came from. Ever since little league, it’s been like that. I’ve always played with that confidence, that I can’t be defeated.”

While at South Carolina, the Greenwood native enjoyed a plethora of success, most notably as a senior where he built a reputation of being one of the hardest hitting defensive players in the country, racking up 79 tackles during the 2012 campaign. A Second Team All-SEC performer, Swearinger tallied two interceptions, including one he returned 69 yards for a touchdown against Arkansas. Breaking up a team-high seven passes, the former Greenwood High School All-State selection also racked up two fumble recoveries during his senior campaign as a Gamecock, including a 65 yard return for a touchdown.

Now given the opportunity to display his talents in front of NFL scouts, with hopes of being selected in the 2013 NFL Draft, Swearinger, who is the sixth ranked safety according to NFL.com, explained that taking the next step in his career is a dream come true.

“I’ve worked really hard to get to this point,” Swearinger said. “Going from working hard in high school, to college, and now have a childhood dream of playing in the NFL right in front of me, it’s a dream come true to be able to have the chance to just reach out and take it.”

Known for his hard-hitting style of play, Swearinger was penalized twice this year for helmet to helmet hits. His hit on a University of Alabama-Birmingham receiver garnered him a one-game suspension from the SEC league office. The hit in the Arkansas game preceded his interception return for a touchdown.  As he makes the transition to the professional level, Swearinger explained that adjusting to the physical play will be essential in his maturation process as a player.

“I need to work on tackling lower,” Swearinger explained. “The NFL is big on helmet to helmet hits, and with me being penalized a couple times this past season for helmet to helmet hits, I know that I need to work on having a lower target, tackling lower.”

While Swearinger is unsure where his future in football will lead him, the ex-Gamecock filled with swagger on the field knows that one thing is for sure as he prepares for his professional career: he is ready to make an immediate impact for the team that selects him in the draft.

“Whoever drafts me is going to get a player that works hard,” Swearinger said. “They’ll get someone who is the first one there every day, and the last one to leave; someone who works as hard as they can every single day, someone who will make an impact from day one.”


ewireless in article
Related Stories:
• Draft expert high on Greenwood natives
• Wildcats sign letters of intent



Reader Comments

Posted: Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Article comment by: Tom Butler

DJ, what a player, student, and person! I do not know If I have been around a more total package than this young man. He will be successful in the NFL, in the professional world, just in life in general. Every time I see this young man on TV I'm so proud to say I had the privilege of watching him grow up in high school. I can not believe next year and for many years to come Me and the rest of America will have the privilege of watching this young man wreck shop in the BIG LEAGUES! Congrats Swag! Hope things are going well in training.



Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, who may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

Note: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number is for our use only, and will not be attached to your comment.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   


Advanced Search








Greenwood Living

Home | Facebook | LinkedIn | Twitter | Our Fan Newsletter
GwdToday.com • 720 Montague Ave Suite 314 • Greenwood • SC • 29649 • News@GwdToday.com
Software © 1998-2014 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved