SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – The Factory, an exclusive gym in Savannah, prefers to keep a low profile. You won’t find a phone number, website, or even an address for this gym. The guys who run the place would much rather prefer to let their work do the talking.
“This is a place where we create professional human beings,” Sam Carter, co-founder of 27:17 The Factory, Inc., explains. “We get them locked in like we are going to college.”
This invite-only club is where middle school and high school athletes from the Coastal Empire participate in high-intensity workouts. Members of The Factory are able to vote new people in, but they can also vote each other out.
“We don’t babysit them,” Rob Deloach, who founded the gym with Carter, added. “They have to put in the work — coach and I just put in a platform for them to be better.”
The gym boasts a long list of members who have gone on to play sports in college. Florida State’s Kalen DeLoach at Florida State, NC State’s Jakeen Harris, West Virginia’s Winston Wright, and future Duke football player Trent Broadnax have all spent extensive time at The Factory.
There are dozens of others we could name, but Carter will be the first to tell you earning a college scholarship is only part of their goal.
“You are going to get real fast and real strong. We know that,” Carter said. “That’s secondary. If you want to stay here [at The Factory], you have to be a great human being and you have to have great parents.”
The youngest workout group includes athletes from 7th, 8th, and 9th grades. They may not be as experienced as the high school upperclassman, but certainly are just as hungry and motivated.
“The factory is just a dog fight and I really, really want it man,” Jurrell Howard, a rising eighth grader said after his workout. “I want to be the top dog in Savannah, the top dog in the state, and top dog in the nation.”
As the months go on and the workouts get more intense, the athletes say the grow closer.
“We got each other’s back,” Calvin Wallace, Jr., another rising eighth grader explained. “Let’s say you have an off day, you have a bad day, or you get hurt. You come here, it’s going to be hard, but you’ve got your teammates to back you up they are your friends.”
Howard, who made his Factory ‘debut’ in March on his birthday, agrees with his workout partner and is appreciative for the opportunity this gym has given him.
“It really changed me a lot and I’m really thankful for this.”