WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
>>Florida State plays its annual exhibition game for Aubry Boyd against Valdosta State on Thursday, Nov. 3, 2016 at 7:00 at the Donald L. Tucker Center.
>>The proceeds of the game will go to the Aubry Boyd Foundation.
>>A $5 donation will be accepted for admission to the game; parking for the event is free.
>>Boyd was a four-time letter winner at Florida State (1988-91) and was injured in a pick-up football game on Oct. 29, 1995. He severed the fourth vertebra in his neck and was left a paraplegic.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – The annual Aubry Boyd game at the Donald L. Tucker Center, which will be played Thursday night at 7:00 p.m. against Valdosta State, is one of the night’s Seminole head coach Leonard Hamilton looks forward to every season. It’s a night when the Florida State family gathers and rises up as the former Seminole great makes his way to midcourt at halftime.
The score doesn’t matter. The players who led the Seminoles in the scoring and rebounding columns are inconsequential. Which Seminole hit the most 3’s or slammed home the most dunks won’t really be remembered the next day.
What the fans will remember is that Florida State always takes care of its own.
Once you become a Seminole you are always as a Seminole. And Thursday night at the Tucker Center, the outpouring of love for Boyd – who called Florida State home for four years – will be evident.
When Boyd arrived at Florida State in 1988, the Seminoles’ media guide touted him as a player “with excellent court vision and dazzling passing skills” that made him one of the top prep point guard prospects in America. He was listed among the nation’s top 45 overall players and the top 15 guards in the nation. He was the signee that elevated Florida State’s recruiting class into the nation’s top five – a class that was the core of the Seminoles’ 1991 NCAA Tournament team.
On Thursday night Boyd will return home to the same thunderous applause he enjoyed as a player. Boyd averaged a career-high 11.8 points per game as a senior in 1991 as he helped lead Florida State to the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The Seminoles’ appearance in the 1991 NCAA Tournament began a three-year span which saw the program advance to the Sweet 16 in 1992 and to within one game of the school’s second appearance in the Final Four in 1993.
Boyd will make his way to mid-court at halftime of Florida State’s exhibition against Valdosta and say thank-you to the Seminole faithful who have made him one of their favorite sons. He will thank them for their support and return quietly to his seat at the end of the Florida State bench.
For Florida State’s fans who grew accustomed to watching Boyd utilize his incredible athleticism on the court as he led the Seminoles to 78 wins in a four-year span, they will welcome Boyd back to Florida State in a wheelchair.
While playing in a pickup football game in his hometown of Macon, Ga., on Oct. 29, 1995, the 6-foot-6 Boyd, then 26, severed the fourth vertebra in his neck and was left a paraplegic.
Florida State’s second exhibition game each year is played for the Aubrey Boyd Foundation with all of the proceeds going to provide monetary assistance for Boyd.
Seminole head coach Leonard Hamilton and the Seminoles Boosters are the caretakers of the foundation.
“Aubry Boyd is a very special part of our program,” said Hamilton. “You can often find him at the end of our bench, almost begging me to put him in a game. His loyalty and love for Florida State is clearly illustrated by the look in his eyes whenever he is around the players on our team. You can see his fighting spirit and his incredible love for our program and the university itself by simply looking his eyes. Aubrey’s spirit is incredible; you can tell how much he loves being on campus, in the arena and around the game.
“Aubrey’s spirit is very uplifting.”
A donation of $5 for admission will be accepted at the Tucker Center with all proceeds going to the foundation. Donations can also be sent to the Aubry Boyd Foundation in care of Seminole Boosters at 225 University Center C, Tallahassee, Fla., 32306.
Freshman Jonathan Isaac scored 17 points and added 11 rebounds and teammate Michael Ojo contributed 14 points and 13 rebounds to lead Florida State to a 119-58 win over Southeastern in men’s basketball exhibition action at the Donald L. Tucker Center on Oct. 27. Isaac and Ojo were two of seven Seminoles to top the double-digit scoring mark, along with junior Phil Cofer who scored a game-high 20 points to go along with nine rebounds.
Florida State plays its first four regular season games of the season at the Donald L. Tucker Center against Charleston Southern (Nov. 12), Iona (Nov. 15), Winthrop (Nov. 18) and Detroit (Nov. 20).