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Sep 30, 2022

Andrew Roberts | Trusting The Process

By: Gracie Sansbury

Note: The following appears in the NC State football gameday program.

Patience. The unique Clemson journey of Andrew Roberts has been a great example of that trait. The senior from Conway, S.C. was quite the athlete growing up, playing multiple sports, including baseball, basketball and football.

In high school, his interest shifted to football because of his passion for competing with his teammates and playing defense.

“I grew up playing football, but I gravitated to it more in high school. I loved the game and the grind every day.”

The culture at Clemson is what Roberts enjoys the most about playing for the Tigers.

“Everything that Clemson has built is why I love playing here. They treat everyone exactly the same and expect greatness from everyone. Everyone is given the same opportunities…you just have to go work and compete.

“It was always the dream to walk on and play at Clemson.”

The defensive end quickly realized how special Clemson was from years of going to games in Death Valley as a kid and attending football camps at the university. Even after receiving walk-on opportunities at other FBS colleges out of high school, Roberts risked it all in hopes he would get the chance to be a Tiger. Finally, after trying out his freshman and sophomore years, his opportunity came and he was added to the roster.

When asked who his biggest mentor at Clemson has been, #97 did not hesitate to talk about his defensive ends coach, Lemanski Hall.

“He takes the time to teach us and help us each individually, and he pushes us and wants us to all have a chance on the field. He is a great man that I look up to and he does a lot more than coach us on football.”

Roberts, who graduated with degrees in financial management and accounting in May, made his debut in the Louisiana Tech game on Sept. 17. The experience was “a long time coming” for the Tiger senior.

“It was exciting being able to step out on that field for the first time. It was surreal, to say the least. It was something I had been dreaming about for a long time.

“That was what I had been working towards ever since I got here. It was an unreal experience to play for one of the best teams in the country.”

While thinking back on his years with the program, his favorite memory has been going to the Cheez-It Bowl at the end of the 2021 season.

“Being at the Cheez-It Bowl was really cool, because the year before we were in the Sugar Bowl, but we didn’t get the usual bowl game experience due to the pandemic. We were able to do a lot of fun things with the team outside of football, and we also played a great game against Iowa State.”

While thinking about what he will miss most about playing football in Tigertown, his first thought was of his teammates and brothers in the defensive end room.

“I am definitely going to miss them the most. They have made such an impact on me, more than I could have ever imagined. We are a big family, and I have looked forward to seeing those guys daily over the last two years, so I will greatly miss coming in and working with them every day.”