Clemson Letterwinners Spring Gathering 2009

April 28, 2009

Spring Gathering 2009 was held April 10-11 and was another great success. Once again, festivities were planned around various Athletic Department intercollegiate events, including the Spring Football Game, baseball games, volleyball competition, and men’s tennis matches. While the weather did not cooperate in some cases, the weekend was one of our best.

On Friday, April 10, 160 former male and female Clemson athletes gathered at the Walker Course on the Clemson campus and Cross Creek Plantation in Seneca and competed in a captain’s choice format golf tournament. The group included members of the current football coaching staff as well as former coaches and staff members of the various Clemson sports. Because of heavy rain showers throughout the day, play was interrupted on several occasions, but everyone acknowledged afterwards that it was a great event, due in large part to the story-telling and fellowship which took place both on and off the two courses.

Jimmy Howard hosted horseshoes at his Horseshoes Pavilion once again, and as always, this was a very popular event.

On Friday evening, over 300 letterwinners and their families gathered in the Tiger Den for the awards dinner and raffle. Everyone enjoyed a delicious dinner, and many won prizes which consisted of complimentary rounds of golf at some of the best courses in the state, complimentary dinners at some of South Carolina’s finest restaurants, paintings of Clemson Tigers, and various Clemson apparel. We even had a very nice putter contributed by Bob Hughes, former Tiger baseballer.

The crowd was welcomed by Athletic Director, Terry Don Phillips, and Senior Associate Athletic Director for External Affairs, Bill D’Andrea. Head Football Coach, Dabo Swinney, gave a very passionate talk to everyone, and we all agreed, again, that our football program is in excellent hands. As Dabo concluded his address, many could be heard echoing “I’m In”.

On Saturday, April 11, 300 plus letterwinners and family enjoyed brunch in Tiger Den, and the “overflow” crowd remained to watch and enjoy the Spring Game.

Charlie Bussey was high in his praise of various individuals who worked hard at making Spring Gathering 2009 such a success. “Jim Davis and his wife, Bobbie, planned and organized a super golf tournament and awards dinner. They are both ‘detail persons’, Jim knows how to run a tournament, and we simply couldn’t do this without them.”

Bussey went on the thank many within the Clemson Athletic Department “family” who played important roles in making it a fun affair. He concluded by publicly thanking Terry Don Phillips, Bill D’Andrea, and Bert Henderson, Executive Director of IPTAY by stating, “If they didn’t have the vision and didn’t see the importance of investing time, effort and finances in the Tiger Letterwinners Association and what we try to do as far as getting our former athletes and their families back on campus, keeping them active, tailgating prior to home football games, and enjoying events such as Spring Gathering, we simply couldn’t exist. Every letterwinner owes those three a lot.”