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Gamecock Talk: Curtis Frye, An Underdog Story
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Gamecock Talk: Curtis Frye, An Underdog Story

Curtis Frye was at the helm of South Carolina Track and Field for the past 27 years, but in June, the legendary head coach announced his retirement. Frye spent his career thriving on the underdog mentality, something he used to turn the Gamecocks into the type of program that produces All-Americans.

Frye earned the respect of his coaching peers by earning National Coach of the Year honors from the United States Track Coaches Association (USTCA) three times, and he led the women’s track team to the 2002 NCAA Outdoor Championship.

In the excerpt below from Gamecock Talk, Curtis Frye reflects on his successful career with the Gamecocks and explains why he is so passionate about the sport of track and field.

HOST:What did you love so much about track and field? Because there’s a lot going on.”

FRYE: “Track and field was diverse. When you coach track, you just coach people.

All people. Emotional people, depressed people, sad people, lonely, excited, and all in a moment of thrill you can have all of them stumble, in a straightaway in first place. You get five minutes to pick yourself up and get ready, to warm up, to be on a relay with four people depending on you.

So what I like about it is so much like life. You cannot lock yourself in a gated community in track and field. You gotta come out of it sometime and you gotta learn how to adapt and be with the whole world. And it’s the whole world. It’s the biggest sport in the world. Every four years everybody in the world’s eyes are on track and field.”

This transcript was edited for clarity. Listen to the rest of the episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or watch it on Gamecocks+.