I can't say I like it either, but it is what's keeping Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina from letting their in-state non-conference rivals into the SEC. They like the leg-up in recruiting it gives them.
I don't know whether Clemson wants in or not, but FSU reportedly begged not long ago.
Clemson certainly wouldn't run the other way if the SEC offered.
That being said, Georgia and SCAR will always keep Clemson out of the SEC, because they know without the SEC label, they have zero recruiting advantage over Clemson.