Skip to main content

Everything Shane Beamer after the 2024 South Carolina spring game

by:Peyton Butt04/21/24

After a successful 2024 spring game, South Carolina head coach Shane Beamer addressed the media.

Here’s everything he said.

Opening statement

“First of all want to thank our fans, it was an awesome environment out there tonight and what a spring game should be like here at South Carolina, in the SEC. Thanks to them for the turnout. A lot of recruits there tonight, obviously. If you follow me on X, saw some great news before the game and a lot of that was because of the environment around our stadium that they saw before the game as well. Great environment, can’t wait to see them back out here in August when we kick it off against Old Dominion. It was a lot of fun out there and what a reward for our players. We told our players you know have fun and compete tonight and it’s a reward for them because of the hard work they put in this spring as well. Firework show was awesome, thought the field looked great thanks to the grounds crew so really really good night overall.”

“Congrats to, I saw they just called Nyckoles Harbor in the locker room, but congrats to him. I saw he set a personal record today and ran the third fastest 100m time in the history of South Carolina Track and Field so really really cool for him. He’s mad at me, he wanted to play tonight. Came to me yesterday, said he wanted to play, I called him last night to tell him I wasn’t going to let him play, he’s got a chance to win a championship here at Carolina and run in the Olympics. I wasn’t going to be the dumb football coach that let him go out there and pull a hamstring and cost him a shot at a championship. But super fired up for him and excited to get him back out there with us once the track seasons over as well. Best of luck to our men’s tennis team, I see that they are playing for the SEC championship tomorrow so what a great run they have had in the tournament. Best of luck to those guys, hope it goes great.”

[GamecockCentral for $1: In-depth coverage and a great community]

“It’s been a great spring for us, certainly feel like we’ve gotten better and thats what I just told the team in there. We’ve gotten better as a team since January and since practice one of the spring. There’s no question we’ve made a lot of improvements, got a lot of work to do but we’ve gotten better. Exams start next week here at Carolina, last day of class is Monday. So we’ve got to finish strong in the class room which confident our guys will do so we’ve got work to do. But love this group, love the way they work, love the way they compete, you saw that out there tonight. Nick Emmanwori for example, he hadn’t really practiced a whole lot the last week or so. He’s just been banged up and I wasn’t sure if he was going to play and I called him Thursday night before the radio show to see if he was playing and see where his mindset was health wise. We weren’t going to put him out there before he was ready. He was like ‘Are you kidding me of course I’m playing.’ And we were hoping with a lot of our older guys just to get a quarter out of them and get some young guys in there and he’s in there the whole first half competing and trying to go back in the game in the second half as well. So a lot of guys like that that love to compete, love to work and are what we want this place to be about.”

“Injury wise, luckily we feel like we got out of it in fairly good shape. TJ Sanders rolled his ankle a little bit on the very first play of the game. Markee Anderson’s back locked up, something he has been struggling with. He’s been beat up whether it be a knee, or excuse me thigh or here in the last week or so his back’s been bothering him. Literally the first rep of warm ups and his back locked up and he wasn’t able to go tonight so we’ll get that checked out next week. But don’t think either one of those are anything long term or significant. Our other injured guys that have been out this spring or didn’t play tonight will be fine and good to go once we come back, gotta finish up exams. Month of May is critical for our guys, got a lot of work to do. They are off but a lot of them will stay around here on their own and then they are back in June for summer school and full speed ahead. So again, lot of work to do but love the progress that we’ve made certainly, another plug, I said this the other day in the press conference but if you enjoyed the firework show out there tonight just now. I highly encourage you to come to the Beamer Ball next Saturday night right back here in Williams-Brice Stadium. If you think that firework show was awesome, you outta see the one at the conclusion of the Beamer Ball. So open to everyone, great fundraiser for our program and athletic department, looking forward to being here next Saturday night for that awesome event as well.”

[On3 App: Get South Carolina push notifications from GamecockCentral]

LaNorris Sellers’ performance

“I thought LaNorris was really really good. He has been good all spring, he won an award that we decided on as coaches at halftime. I thought he just looked very very poised out there, very efficient, he looked good running the ball. Those defensive guys were yelling at me the entire first half that they thought a lot of those runs would have been sacks, they were mad that I didn’t blow the whistle. I thought he did a really good job just operating the offense, running when it presented itself and being able to make throws also. Did a good 9 of 11 and ran for 40 yards holding five carries so really good night.”

Tablets and headsets being used on the field per new NCAA rules

“I think good, we’ve done the headset in some of the practices just to get used to hearing it. We’ve been kind of off and on all spring, we didn’t do it every single practice but we did it some of the practices. But I definitely wanted to do it tonight just because the next time we are in that big a crowd we will be doing it for real in August. Just being able to get used to the noise in the background, the band, the fans, all that. Thought we needed to do it tonight, thought it went well best I can tell. The tablets I don’t know, we had a bunch of them down there. The same thing, I told the coaches just get used to even if it’s nothing to really look at but just get your guys on the sidelines after each series and just go through something so they are used to seeing that also. That’ll be new obviously in college football for us but we want to be able to take advantage of it and not have the first game against Old Dominion be the first time we try all that stuff.”

Djay Braswell and the running back trio brought in

“I thought all those guys did well. Oscar, I just told him he had some good runs, some runs early and did some good things. Saw him getting north south and really all those guys. Nathan Harris-Waynick, Larry Scott both guys that are walk-ons. Chase McCraken, Jawarn Howell, all those guys got in there and got carries. Djay’s a guy that can run, he’s got home run ability because of his speed, showed some of that ability tonight. He obviously in there and played some last year as a true freshman and certainly with his speed he brings an element to that running back room without a doubt. But again with all those guys, Djay included, it’s about so much more than just the ball in your hand it’s the pass protection part of it and it’s the catching the ball aspect of it as well. He had a good night tonight and continued to commit to what we wanted out of that running back position and continued to develop as a player.”

4-2-5 vs 3-3-5 on defense

“Not really, I thought the defense has been kind of like they have all spring, deep and athletic. We’re flexible and multiple and able to do different things. A lot of maybe what you saw tonight front wise was really just from a personnel standpoint. With the draft, it ended up that some positions were very very very very thin. If you only have two defensive tackles on the team and I think one team had three defensive tackles and one of those was Tonka. We don’t want those guys being out there the entire night. A lot of that was just from a flexibility standpoint, let’s just try and get 11 guys out there to make sure we are able to get some rest. You may have seen some personnel groupings on defense that we don’t even have. Just because we maybe had a linebacker lining up as a defensive end just to get a body out there to give another guy rest. That’ll be good for the teams that watch us, that they’re preparing for that. I thought overall the defense has been good, they’ve gotten better and as I told you guys, just our depth and our athleticism and size is noticeably different. You watch Monkell Goodwine run around at d-tackle. You watch DeAndre Jules run around at d-tackle to go along with the guys that we are bringing back. Then you add Kyle Kennard and Dylan Stewart to the defensive end group and all those guys were bringing back. Then you got Debo and Bam coming back at linebacker but then you add Bangally Kamara, you add Demetrius Knight, you add Wendell Gregory and you add Fred Johnson its just upfront, that front seven, really excited about. Just their ability and athleticism.”

[Newsletters: Get breaking news and analysis from GamecockCentral]

Bryan Thomas Jr. using his skills

“He’s been really good, really really has been. We gave that most outstanding defensive player award to DQ Smith and from talking to Coach White and the defensive staff, Bryan was someone that was very much in consideration for that too. He’s been very consistent. I think Bryan’s done a great job of understanding where his strengths are. You look at him, he doesn’t look like Dylan Stewart, he doesn’t look like Desmond just from a size standpoint and that’s okay. My dad’s in the room and one of the greatest defensive ends he ever had was a guy by the name of Cory Moore and he was maybe six foot. But he understood leverage and he was hard to block and he was a relentless player. Bryan I think has done a great job of embracing his skill set. He’s not going to be able to take on offensive tackles and double teams and all that consistently. But understanding how to add pass rush moves to his repertoire and how to disrupt the run game and things like that. As well he’s just been very consistent and very very good all spring and excited what he’s done. He’d certainly taken a step, he was mad at me, he was one of, him and Boogie both where, Desmond were really on me about some sacks that they thought I cheated them out of. Particularly in the first quarter, particularly on the first drive. Boogie says I missed three on the first drive alone so we’ll have to go back and look at the tape to see if I did miss three sacks. If so I apologize but I talked to a former head coach in the SEC yesterday and he said no matter what you do make sure there’s offensive fireworks in the spring game and they score touchdowns so we tried to put on a good show tonight.”

The proposal at the beginning of the game

“I just think it’s really cool that someone would do that. I had no idea they were going it, I was as surprised as anybody and I didn’t want to run out there and steal their moment so I tried to just stand on the sideline and let them have their moment and say hello to them when they were done. Really all I said was just congratulations and how cool that was but its pretty cool. Thats what’s great about college athletics whatever you want to call it. He felt this would be the place to do it and to be in that environment but that this place means so much to them that thats where he wanted to propose to her as well is pretty cool. Just being able to hear stories from people about what South Carolina means to them and I know want it means to me. I mean I didn’t go to school here but I know how special this place is and how much I love Columbia, South Carolina and this university. Pretty cool to see two people that feel something similar.”

Dylan Stewart and adjusting to college football

“I think Luke Day, a couple weeks ago, made the comment to me, he’s like, ‘You know, those players that are highly, highly, highly recruited, they’re highly, highly recruited for a reason.’ Because they can adjust to college football really quickly and I would put Dylan Stewart in that group. I would put Josiah Thompson in that group, two guys highly recruited, could have gone anywhere in the country and they chose to come here. Mazeo Bennett, a lot of our guys in that freshman class but Dylan’s been a guy that’s really just it’s never been too big for him, the moment. Practice, whatever it might be certainly was an adjustment in January when he comes here and he starts classes and he’s in the weight room weight program and all that. That was an adjustment but as far as being out on the field, thats when he’s at his best and he’s a really good player, he’s a great young man, he’s doing really well in school and he’s been like that all spring. Our scrimmage two weeks ago here in the stadium, he was probably the most impressive guy up front that we had on our defense. He and Mazeo both had a great day two weeks ago and I thought he finished strong and had fun out there tonight. He doesn’t say much at all but he’s just the same guy all the time but when it’s go time look out because he can go.”

How the offensive line has created separation throughout spring

“I think they’ve made progress you know we’ve been banged up front field just on the offensive line with some injuries. Josiah he was out for a couple weeks and it was hard to obviously get him work because he was out. Markee was banged up, he got hurt a couple scrimmages ago and missed some practices. We just have had that continuity like we want to have throughout the spring, all 15 practices. But I feel like this past week we’ve been able to get kind of a core group of guys in there and I feel like since last Saturday, we really committed to running the football. Last Saturday in the scrimmage, did a good job of it and then we’ve continued to develop that run, pass, protection all that this week as well. It would have been better I think to be honest it we had been able to just completely stay healthy but we’ve done a good enough job and thought they did some good things tonight. Particularly that Garnet group on the offensive line and when we did the draft we broke up the offensive lines into two 9 man teams so the Garnet team had one offensive line of nine guys. Then the Black team had another team and then one of those teams, I guess Markee was on the black team I think, you lose your guy that was going to be your starting guard, you lose him in pregame warm-up so that didn’t help the Black team offensive line tonight. But overall that group and then the best thing, one of the best things that will help us is I think I said it the other day to you guys but you know last year we started two true freshman on the offensive line. Tree and Tro and they didn’t even get here until June and then they’re starting SEC games two months later. You got Blake Franks, you got Kam Pringle, you got Josiah Thompson. I just told Kam in the locker room it’ll be so much easier for him when he gets to August. One he’s blocking a pretty good defense group. I was at dinner with Kam last night because we have an elite offensive lineman here on campus for an official visit. Kam was at dinner with us last night and that’s what I was telling Kam. We’re young on the offensive line, we’re old on the defensive line. I mean you talk about Jules and Kell and Tonka and Boogie and TJ. Those guys have been in college football for some of those guys fives years now and then you got freshman that should still be in high school today. They’re trying to block those guys and they’ve done a good job. They’ve had those moments, their moments and they’ll be so much better for it and our offensive line will be so much better for it. That they’ve gone through spring practice and faced a defensive line like that each and every day.”

Naming a starting quarterback

“I can’t believe it took till question 8 or 9. I thought I’m sure David was going to come with that when he asked about LaNorris.’ No, I know when you see him get an award at halftime it’s easy to say ‘okay well he got an award surely he’s going to be the starting quarterback.’ Those are all that we’ll sit down obviously evaluate all 15 practices and he dod a good job tonight. So to answer your question, I’ll watch the tape of this, we’ll sit down and start player meetings with our guys Monday morning at 7 a.m. with players in my office for the next three days. I’ll have those conversations with the staff and those players as far as where their role is and then go from there.”

Momentum this spring versus years before

I think momentum wise, I like the energy and I think we had that in 2021 as well. In 2021 the energy in the spring game as well so that’s a credit to our fans. We’ve had energetic spring games and momentum I think every spring that we’ve had without a doubt. Tonight was awesome also certainly felt that momentum and the energy. I had an earpiece and was mic’d up with Taylor Zarzour and Matt Stinch from the TV crew all night and they were commenting on it. Just the excitement and the energy in Williams Brice Stadium, it’s one of the best venues in all of college football on their right. As far as this team, there’s a great hunger about them. Ever since they came back in January, they’ve been fantastic. A lot of returning guys, we’ve got 12 players on our team that were here in 2020 and they were adamant about finishing better than what we did last season. They’ve been great leaders and have shown a great work ethic and lead in the way since they came back in January. Then you inject a bunch of new faces in here whether it be transfers or all of our freshman that are here. That’s what I like, it’s just the closeness of the group and I’ve had players on the team tell me just unsolicited in the last few weeks just how close the locker room is. And how much better, not that it was bad before but this is the best and closest team we’ve had. Everybody’s in the same direction and believes in the same thing and we’ve got a lot of work to do but I like where we are right now. I like the direction that we’re going as a 2024 team and as a program. Also with the way that we’re recruiting players and there’s a lot of impressive players out there tonight. A lot of those guys are true freshman and sophomores.”

Xavier Legette and other alumni in attendance

“Excited for all of those guys. Saw Jalen Brooks on the sideline tonight, so it was great to see him again. Dakereon, I saw him down there. I didn’t see him, I think Marcellas was supposed to be here, but all of our guys, and I’ve obviously gotten a lot of calls from NFL teams about Spencer, about Xavier, about Cel, about a lot of our guys. Number one I tell all those guys what great young men they are and competitors. They’ve made our program so much better and with Spencer it’s about the competitor. Obviously the talent speaks for itself but I know he’s really impressed a lot of NFL teams with the way that he dealt with adversity last year here at Carolina. And the plays that he’s made in his time here for sure. Then with Xavier Legette same thing, his work ethic, how football smart he is, how much he loves to compete. He was in our weight room at 6 A.M. on Thursday, he’s in our weight room working with our strength staff. Then Friday I come off the practice field Friday morning and he’s in the weight room working our again. He’s a guy thats not satisfied. He’s got a great hunger, a great work ethic and really excited for the draft on Thursday night, Friday and Saturday to see all of our guys hopefully get called all three nights. Someone on Thursday night and then certainly guys Friday night and then throughout the day on Saturday.”

Discuss South Carolina football on The Insiders Forum!

You may also like