Gators Sign Kenny Boynton

The Florida Gators began the early signing period by finalizing Kenny Boynton's decision to join Billy Donovan's program. The hot shot guard from American Heritage School in Plantation, Florida is ranked the second best shooting guard in the nation by and was teammates with Florida freshman Eloy Vargas last season.

Donovan shares his thoughts on what Boynton brings to the program.

BD: "Kenny is a terrific player from a great family. I think the one thing he provides for our team, he's an explosive scorer. The one thing that people don't talk enough about when it comes to him in my opinion is he's a great competitor and he's a great defender. I think that's very very rare. A lot of time with high school kids you see a lot of great scorers, but they don't play at the other end of the floor. He's a lock down type of defender in my opinion. He's as phenomenal competitor. He gives us an explosive, scoring perimeter guy that's kind of a combination guard. We're certainly happy he's a Gator."

Virtually every school in the country wanted Boynton with Duke, Texas and Memphis providing Florida's toughest competition for his signature. Donovan says it's always satisfying when you work that hard to get a player and everything comes together.

BD: "The thing that people don't realize in recruiting is that you lose more than you sign. More people tell you "no" than tell you "yes". We're sure happy he told us "yes". I've had some recruitments that have been disappointing when you've invested a lot of time and worked very hard. I had a chance to see him play just about every time. I did see him play a game in July and (Assistant Coach) Rob Lanier worked very hard as did our entire staff. Anytime you put your heart and soul into something and you work hard at something and get the reward at the end you feel good about it. But you also know that when you put your heart and soul into that that's your only chance that you have to get some type of reward at the end but that goes with the business."

Donovan also shared his story about bringing a dart gun with him on a home visit with the Boynton family. The gun was for the family to use if it felt the need to.

BD: "The one thing I was trying to get across to them is that I don't want to sound like anybody else. If I start coming across like a used car salesman anybody in the room can pick up the gun and shoot me and get me to change my tone and my focus. Kenny said afterward, "You must have done pretty good because nobody shot you"."

But that wasn't the end of the gun saga. Donovan's son Bryan had another idea as to what the gun had been used for.

BD: "Obviously I took the gun home with me and I brought it in the house. My kid actually thought it was a gift for him. My kid actually thought – my youngest did – that Kenny Boynton and I were playing dart guns at his house."

Well there probably won't be any darts thrown over this signing. Boynton might be the most complete two-guard Donovan has signed in his 13 years with the Gators.

Florida is expected to add two forwards by the end of the week. Erik Murphy from Massachusetts and Deshawn Painter from Virginia have both pledged to join the Florida program for the 2009-10 season. The Florida trio is ranked the third best early class in the country trailing only North Carolina and Texas. Kentucky is the only other SEC squad with a top 25 early class.

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