April 1, 2008 - by

Seminole Great Durham Honored As Keynote Speaker At Men’s Basketball Banquet On April 16

April 1, 2008




TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Hugh Durham, the second-winningest basketball coach in Florida State basketball history, will be the honored keynote speaker at the Seminole Men’s Basketball Awards Banquet on April 16 at the Tom and Ginny Futch Ballroom in University Center B on the Florida State campus. Durham led Florida State to three NCAA Tournament appearances and guided the Seminoles to the NCAA Tournament Championship game in 1972. Florida State made its’ first ever NCAA Tournament appearance under Durham’s tutelage in 1968.

Head Coach Leonard Hamilton and his staff will honor this year’s team and highlight the careers of Isaiah Swann, Jason Rich, Ralph Mims and Matt Zitani for their contributions to the program in the last four seasons.

“It’s very special when you can call upon your decorated history to help celebrate your current players,” said Hamilton. “Hugh Durham is one of the great coaches in college basketball history and we are fortunate that he is one of the prominent people who has built this program. Coach Durham has touched the lives of many of our fans and former players and will continue to build a bridge with our current players at our banquet – a night that I consider to be one of the really special nights of the year for our program.”

Durham is the second winningest coach in school history with 229 victories and is the 15th-leading scorer in school history with 1,381 career points. As a player from 1957-59, Durham led Florida State in scoring twice and averaged a career-high 21.9 points per game as a senior in 1959. Durham still ranks third in points scored in a single game (43 against Stetson in 1957) and scored more than 500 points in two different seasons (1957 and 1959). Durham averaged 18.9 points and shot better than 77 percent from the free throw line for his career. His average of 21.9 points per game in 1958-59 is the seventh best in Florida State history while his career average of 18.9 points per game is still the ninth best in school history.

After enjoying a standout career as a player, he returned to lead the Seminoles’ as one of the nation’s winningest and most respected coaches. He led the Seminoles to three NCAA Tournament appearances and guided the Seminoles to the NCAA Tournament Championship game in 1972. Florida State made its’ first ever NCAA Tournament appearance under Durham’s tutelage in 1968. A hard-fought 81-76 loss to a great UCLA team in the championship game prevented Durham’s Florida State from winning the NCAA crown. Durham had a winning percentage of better than 70 percent as Florida State’s head coach from 1966-78 and led the Seminoles to more than 20 victories in four different seasons. He recruited and coached Dave Cowens, who is considered to be the greatest Seminole basketball player ever.

Durham’s career totals as an NCAA Division I head coach are 633 wins, 429 losses (.596 winning percentage), eight NCAA tournament appearances, two Final Fours and seven NIT bids. Durham coached nine All-Americans, four Academic All-Americans, four first-round NBA draft picks and a pair of Olympians. Fifteen of his former players went on to play in the NBA and he had 31 players selected in the NBA draft.

Reservations for the banquet can be made to the Florida State basketball office at (850) 644-1461. A social hour begins at 6:00 p.m. with the dinner and awards ceremony beginning at 7:00 p.m.

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