Thirteen years after leaving, Steph Curry has been officially enshrined in Davidson folklore.
The 34-year-old needed to complete one semester of coursework to earn his Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology, which he accomplished in May. However, he wasn’t able to attend the commencement ceremony.
But he was finally honored on Wednesday evening. As well as receiving his diploma, Curry had his now-famous No. 30 jersey number retired by Davidson, as well as being inducted into Davidson College’s Hall of Fame.
“I get kind of awkward at times when I walk into this gym and see this many people showing up just for me and the celebration of what, you know, the graduation and the Hall of Fame induction and seeing my jersey in the rafters,” Curry said.
“But every single person that I got to play with, that coached me, help me when I was hurt and injured and trying to find ways to get back on the court. All the faculty and staff that supported me through my three years here. I really feel like this is why this matters so much.
“And I was trying to figure out how to really embrace this moment because my mom said, ‘I don’t know if anybody’s had a solo graduation of this magnitude before,’ but it hit me just seeing, you know, familiar faces, friends, people that you went to war with, people that believed in you before even anybody else in the country knew what we were about, set the table for me to come into this community and just be comfortable to be myself and to stay in the present and not putting any extra pressure on just being an amazing college athlete and enjoying the journey of what it meant to be a student here on this beautiful campus.”
Curry became the first Davidson athlete in any sport to have his jersey number retired. The school has a rule that athletes must have a degree for a jersey to be retired.
During his time at the college – which is located about 25 miles north of Charlotte, North Carolina, where the four-time NBA champion grew up – Curry blossomed into a future star.
In three seasons, Curry finished his distinguished career as the Southern Conference’s all-time leading scorer. He set the conference career record for triples made (414) and set an NCAA record with 162 three-pointers in 2008. Curry was named first-team all-conference all three years and was a consensus All-American in 2009.
Curry was honored with speeches from his parents, Sonya and Dell, and his former coach Bob McKillop, among others.
“To earn this degree, you showed determination and perseverance,” Davidson president Doug Hicks said during the ceremony.
“It would have been so easy, so straightforward to not complete your college degree. Yet in response to that idea, you did what you did to 29 other NBA organizations, you said, ‘Night, night.’”
Curry, who played for the college between 2006 and 2009, was drafted with the seventh pick of the 2009 NBA draft by the Golden State Warriors.
With the San Francisco-based team, Curry has developed into a league-altering player, his lethalness from the three-point range almost singlehandedly changing the way teams have played offense and defense.
In the 2012/13 season, Curry set the record for most three-pointers in a season, a record he further broke two times. On December 14, 2021, Curry set the NBA record for career three-pointers, passing Ray Allen.
In his 13 years in the NBA, Curry has won the NBA title four times – most recently last season – been named NBA Most Valuable Player twice and is an eight-time All-Star.