Nick Boyd’s Journey to This Year’s Final Four
Photo by: Aaron Fertel (@shotbycuh)
Nick Boyd’s journey to playing high level Division 1 basketball is quite similar to the journey that his school, Florida Atlantic University, had during the March Madness tournament. Growing up, Boyd was not your typical five star athlete who received numerous praise from the public. Instead, Boyd continuously worked to further his game to the point where someone would notice him and give him a chance. Now, the whole college basketball world knows his name.
Originally from New York, Boyd spent his high school basketball career in New Jersey changing locations so he could maximize the most of his ability.
“I started playing on the freshman team at Don Bosco,” Boyd expressed. “I was 5’4 at that age, so it wasn’t a lot of hope for me at the time. Usually guys who play at the college level, they are either starting JV or varsity as a freshman, so it was a tough pill to swallow. But even then, I kept going with it.”
“In my sophomore year, I made the JV team, but I was the eighth or ninth man. That was when I had a conversation with my dad, and that changed everything. I needed a little push at the time, and my dad did exactly that by letting me know that I had to work. After that, I started working with him in our backyard basketball hoop for 30 minutes every day, even after practice. That was when I started to get more minutes on the team. Going along with that, I started to grow as well. As I started to improve drastically, I realized I needed to go to another school where I knew I would flourish. That was when me and my family decided to transfer to St. Mary’s in Rutherford.”
Boyd was able to do something in which many young athletes tend to not realize, which is going somewhere that you can be valued in the highest order. Don Bosco is a basketball powerhouse in the Garden State, so the chances of a player making an immediate impact is very slim. But if you can go to a program where they are not as known, you can have the chance to change the atmosphere completely around, and that is exactly what Boyd did and continued to do for his ongoing career.
“After being out for my whole junior year due to a leg injury, I worked constantly with my trainer J.R Levy,” said Boyd. By the time my senior year came, I averaged 30 points per game, which was the most in the state. Despite my success, I still was not getting any interest really. That led to my decision to want to attend a prep school, which led to the transition to Bosco Institute in Indiana.”
“After my first open gym, the coach of the program, Coach Dave, let me know that he thinks that I’m a Division 1 type of player. He was the first person to ever tell me. As soon as I started to play for him, some offers started to roll in, and now here I am at Florida Atlantic.”
Fast forwarding into now, Boyd and the Owls became one of the most popular teams in March Madness. With beating programs like Memphis and Tennessee to get to the Final Four, FAU was an underdog team that quickly became a fan favorite through their journey. The only thing that was able to state the team’s momentum was a buzzer-beating jumpshot from San Diego State, and it is the same reason why Boyd is looking toward even bigger things for next season.
“The goal for next year is a national championship,” Boyd said. “We’re looking to have the same group of guys for next year so we’re going to go in with the same amount of confidence so we can win the whole thing.”
If you are looking for a team to root for next season in the NCAA, please consider FAU as one of your options. BEcause it is players like Nick Boyd who have stories that should be both talked about more and put in the position where they have the chance to win it all. Due to his hard work and dedication, I believe big things are coming for Boyd and the Florida Atlantic Owls in the near future.