December 29, 2011
Michael Floyd has made some amazing catches during his four seasons at Notre Dame, but the one he made in the third quarter of Thursday's 18-14 loss to Florida State in the Champs Sports Bowl was definitely a highlight and the last thing Irish faithful will remember from their star receiver.
Shortly after the play, Floyd left the game with an undisclosed injury after taking a couple brutal hits to his hip area, including one after the circus touchdown catch that extended the Irish's lead to 14-0.
In a way, Floyd's final game was a microcosm of his career at Notre Dame: He showed flashes of greatness, then disappeared, leaving the Irish longing for his presence and coming up short because it wasn't there.
Floyd's tumultuous tenure with the Irish has been well documented. He'd had three alcohol-related issues, including an arrest for DUI in March that led to a year probation and indefinite suspension from the team. After showing coach Brian Kelly that he was "all-in" Floyd was reinstated prior to the start of fall camp. And he turned his third chance into his best season, finishing with a career-high 1,147 yards and nine touchdowns. Prior to this season, his previous the campaigns had been riddled with missed games because of injuries.
It's unfortunate that Floyd's Champs Sports Bowl was cut short because of an injury and he didn't get to show more of the flashiness that has made fans and scouts drool in the past. But at least Notre Dame's all-time leader in career receptions, receiving yards, touchdown receptions and 100-yard receiving games did give us one final play at which to marvel.