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Kelly Bryant perplexed by Clemson national championship ring outrage

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Despite the outrage across the internet, Kelly Bryant doesn’t seem too concerned about not receiving a national championship ring from Clemson.

Bryant, now the starting quarterback at Missouri, started the first four games of the 2018 season for Clemson before being passed on the depth chart by star freshman Trevor Lawrence. Instead of being the backup, Bryant decided to leave the team to preserve his final season of eligibility. Bryant announced his move to Missouri in December as Lawrence led Clemson to the national title.

Because Bryant left the team, Clemson coach Dabo Swinney told ESPN earlier this week that Bryant would not be receiving a championship ring.

"He wasn't on the team. You've gotta be on the team to get a ring," Swinney told ESPN. "I love Kelly and appreciate what he did for us, but he decided to move on."

Swinney’s statement became a talking point in the days since. It was pretty perplexing for Bryant.

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Bryant’s decision was about best positioning himself for a shot at the NFL. That would have been tough behind Lawrence, who is already being touted as a generational talent. Bryant is a good player, too. He went 16-2 as a starter at Clemson, including 4-0 last year, but Lawrence was just too good to stay off the field. Some view Bryant as a quitter for leaving midseason, but he decided to look out for his own best interests and take one last shot at being a starting college quarterback.

Missouri quarterback Kelly Bryant talks with teammates on the bench during an NCAA college football intra-squad spring game Saturday, April 13, 2019, in Columbia, Mo. (AP Photo/L.G. Patterson)
Kelly Bryant is in his first season at Missouri after leaving Clemson. (AP Photo/L.G. Patterson)

Since Bryant made the decision to leave Clemson, Swinney has had nothing but positive things to say about him. And at SEC Media Days, Bryant said he is in frequent contact with many of his former teammates, many with whom he won a national title ring in 2016.

When something like this becomes controversial, you know folks are itching for the season to start. Only a few more weeks, everybody.

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