Marcus Lattimore


On Tuesday, March 3, 2020, Gaffney High School had the privilege to welcome Marcus Lattimore for a couple of hours as he spoke to students and student-athletes. Marcus Lattimore is a 28 year old former running-back, who was highly scouted throughout his high school years. He chose to attend and play for the University of South Carolina from 2010-2012.

During his Freshman year at USC, he broke the career record for rushing touchdowns, and rushed for 1,197 yards. Lattimore still holds that very record at USC. Also during his freshman year, Lattimore was named the NCAA Freshman of the Year, headlining the All-Freshman Team by The Sporting News.

During his sophomore year of college, he suffered from a severe knee injury (torn ligament), that continued to slow him down throughout his junior year. He opted out of his senior year at USC to play for the San Francisco 49ers, when he was drafted in the fourth round of the 2013 NFL drafts. Unfortunately, Lattimore announced his retirement from the NFL in November of 2015. However, in late 2015 Lattimore joined the staff at South Carolina; he would not be joining as a coach for the players, but his job was to motivate, encourage, and teach student athletes about life on and off of the field.

In early 2016, the NCAA declared that USC had an unfair recruiting advantage for hiring Lattimore, because of his work with motivating high school students. Lattimore stated that the NCAA’s statement was fair, so he decided not to join the staff team. Now, Lattimore is an excellent motivational speaker for all people, specifically students.

Lattimore was a guest speaker to students at GHS. He emphasized the importance of your actions, how you react, and time. For example, if you fail at something, you cannot let it bring you down; you have to accept it and be at peace so that your failures will help you succeed. He mentioned being aware of the smallest blessings in life, and making the absolute best out of every situation, no matter how good or bad.


  1. The greatest lessons of my life have been learned through failure, mistakes, pain, and struggles.”
  2. “I have never learned anything through success”
  3. “If you know that your life will consist of struggles, then you can conquer anything you face”
  4. “When you realize that your struggles will help you, they will never defeat you.”
  5. “I am not at the mercy of my conditions”
  6. “Your attitude will change your whole life, make the decision for yourself”

“Time is our most valuable resource, time is our most limited resource,” Lattimore stated. We only have so much time, yet we waste so much of it. We like to think that we have as much time as we need, but the truth is, we don’t. Time is not endless. We all have a ticking clock on our heads, so we should make the absolute most of the limited time we have. We should not waste our time not living up to our full potential. Marcus Lattimore used Kobe Bryant as an example of how limited our time is here on Earth. He discussed that Kobe, and his daughter Gianna, both were aware that life is not irreversible, nor is it never ending.  They made the most of every opportunity they faced, and lived everyday the best they could, until their last. Since they were such amazing people, they still continue to lead their legacy.

Marcus also continues to carry on his legacy as a spectacular football player and a genuine guy who motivates teenagers to live their best life. Thank you Marcus Lattimore for the awesome opportunity to have you speak with our students!

Marcus Lattimore with Gaffney High School Football team members.