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ETSF Exclusive with CJ Spiller

Recently, I had the honor of interviewing Clemson All-American running back, CJ Spiller. This was major for quite a few reasons. For starters, it’s no secret he was one of the best players in all of college football, and definitely a fan favorite of the Tiger Faithful in Death Valley. On top of that, he was responsible for the longest Shock the World journey I have participated in, to date: the 14 hour, 937-mile drive from Denton, Texas to Clemson, South Carolina to see TCU take on Clemson last September. He’s projected to be a first-round selection in tonight’s NFL Draft, and for everything he’s accomplished on the field, it’s more than deserved. On top of that, he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology, being the first in his family to do so.

Anyone who saw Spiller play was treated to a player unlike any in college football last season. There were plenty of games when he would make moves that left defenders grasping at air, commentators searching for words, and fans doing the “CJ!!! SPILLER!!!” chant on many an occasion. “Hearing the fans chant my name in the stands during my last home game is something I’ll always remember,” said Spiller. It was also something the fans did at the 2009 ACC Championship against Georgia Tech. That game was the finale of the second-annual Shock the World Tour.

Since I had already seen Spiller, there was already the feeling of familiarity with Clemson’s faithful, but Ed and B-Lew would be along this time to see it for themselves. The fans chanted Spiller’s name all night long, which we also joined in on, on many an occasion. Despite the fact it ended in a Clemson loss, the game was more than memorable for the All-American back. “Both teams battled, with the main goal of trying to win the championship. Neither team was going to give up, and it came down to one stop, and Tech was able to capitalize,” recounts Spiller. The game was filled with plenty of signature plays, as well as 233 rushing yards and four touchdowns by Spiller, which left us all being thankful for being able to witness such a terrific performance.

The memories made at Clemson were one of the biggest factors in making his return for his senior season. There were also the fun times he had with his teammates, which played a role in him coming back to Clemson for his final year. “Some of my favorite times were listening to Willy Korn imitate coaches on the staff, and running down and touching the rock at Death Valley,” said Spiller.

The same way he was able to make moves on the football field and the classroom, he’s now making them as a Subway fan, which included him being the recipient of one of the greatest concoctions of food that’s ever been seen. Being that he’s been a fan of Subway well before becoming an official Subway fan, the pairing was a natural one. “Part of the fun of being a Subway fan is being able to do my part to promote new breakfast options, healthier eating options, as well as being able to build your own sandwich,” Spiller explained during the conversation. As with the many tasks he’s been able to engage in over the years, this is one he is taking on with open arms and doing a great job of.

NOTE: Make sure to tune into The NFL Draft, starting tonight at 6:30 PM (Eastern) on ESPN. You can also follow CJ Spiller on Twitter at @Lightning28.

-K. Masenda


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