Those videos and pictures that started popping up from the Gamecock Football team’s Twitter account were from ‘Grit Night,’ a five-event challenge on a farm in Leesville, which is owned by Sorinex Exercise Equipment.
On Friday, head football strength and conditioning coach Luke Day told TheBigSpur about the workout, and how it was coordinated with Shane Beamer’s “plan to win” in 2022. This phase featured a whole lot of sand on a 1,000-yard gun range.
“It was the culmination of the competitive toughness nights that we have done two nights a week for the last six weeks,” Day said, “And this was sort of the final competition and a collaborative event as well.”
And there was a reason they went off campus for the final winter workout.
“Last night was going through the plan to win,” Day said, “And we didn’t do it at home, because we have to be better on the road than we were last year in our season. We spent the last six weeks trying to become familiar with really, really difficult things, things that are in our way, things that hold us up, things that trip us up. But to do what we want to do in 2022, we have to be able to complete difficult things that we’ve become familiar with in unfamiliar places, and that means win on the road, so we took the Grit Night event and went on the road with it, to put them in an environment that they otherwise would never have seen or been a part of.
“It’s an unnerving thing to see a stretch of sand that’s 1,000 yards long, in the middle of the wilderness, 40 minutes away from campus and you’ve got to take a bus, then you’ve got to take a sprinter van, because the buses can’t drive down sand roads to get there, then you’re in the middle of the night and you’ve got rental lights lighting it up, so it’s dark and shady in places, then you’re going to be asked to do one of the hardest things you’ve ever done, physically, in your young adult life, so that was the crux of Grit Night.”
With this program, under this coaching staff, everything has a meaning. Thursday night was the most recent example.
“We do our absolute best to try to not say one word to these guys and to each other, without it being defined,” Day said, “So grit is – when you say you’re a gritty guy or this team has grit, we do things with all our might anywhere and all the time. It’s not circumstantial. We try to make things layered, down to the very detail of what the workout shirt was this year.”