Michael Floyd TD Maryland

Floyd sprints his way up NFL draft boards


There was one major question NFL teams had about Notre Dame star receiver Michael Floyd: Just how fast was he? After four seasons of dominating play at Notre Dame using his raw physical abilities, the NFL Scouting Combine offered the Irish’s all-time leading receiver the opportunity to show off his speed, the one remaining on-the-field question mark.

Floyd answered those questions resoundingly, clocking two runs in the 4.4 range, including an official 4.47 that separated him from Baylor’s Kendall Wright, who ran a 4.61 officially. The consensus No. 1 wide receiver in the draft, Oklahoma State’s Justin Blackmon, skipped the 40-yard dash, and only had limited participation in drills and testing, opting to rest a tender hamstring before his March 9 pro day.

Of course, the combine is just the beginning of a two-month slog that’ll have players moving up and down mythical scouting boards up until the NFL Draft. But realistically, while he’ll still have more questions to answer — specifically about his alcohol-related mishaps — Floyd did plenty to help himself in Indianapolis.

“Most people expected him to run in the 4.5s,” Rotoworld’s Evan Silva said about the Irish star’s performance. “But Floyd’s clearly been working on his craft. He demonstrated work ethic, he slimmed down and ran fast.”

Speed isn’t all that’ll make or break Floyd’s case for being a Top-20 pick. It was two years ago that Golden Tate blazed his way to an official 4.42 forty, answering the “one big question” everybody had about Tate’s first round candidacy. (Tate’s second round selection might seem too early in retrospect, with the former Biletnikoff winner struggling early in his career, with only 609 yards and three touchdowns in his first two seasons.)

Still, if there were questions that needed to be answered in Indianapolis, Floyd answered them, acing his first test in front of NFL brass. With Wright hurting his stock with a 4.6 time, Floyd made a rock-solid case to be at least the second wide receiver off the board, with Blackmon needing to put a good 40-yard dash time on the board to solidify his top spot.

Even with heavy rain in forecast, kickoff stays in primetime

Post & Courier via Twitter
Post & Courier (via Twitter)

With rain falling and the forecast expecting much more, Notre Dame and Clemson are kicking off in primetime anyway.

College GameDay was on campus this morning, showcasing the soggy conditions and the mud-covered campus. And while some wondered whether or not the kickoff would move up to earlier in the day to take advantage of a slight lull in the conditions, kickoff is remaining at 8:22 p.m.

“We’ve been in constant communication with state and local law enforcement and have monitored weather throughout the week and today,” director of athletics Dan Radakovich said in a statement Friday night. “I’ve spoken with campus leaders, State Highway Patrol, and Governor Nikki Haley, and feel confident we can play the game as scheduled. We ask our fans to be conscientious arriving and departing from our campus as we will have some limitations due to this ongoing weather event.”

Ball security will be key this evening, and during an interview with Tom Rinaldi this morning Kelly mentioned the punting and kick game as concerns in these conditions. The Irish came to Clemson prepared for miserable conditions and if the forecast holds, they’ll get just that.

Irish get commitment from 2017 TE Cole Kmet

Cole Kmet

Notre Dame’s tight end recruiting keeps rolling. The Irish received a commitment from Illinois tight end Cole Kmet, who adds a third piece to Notre Dame’s 2017 recruiting class.

Kmet is a 6-foot-4, 230-pounder, joining fellow blue-chipper 2017 tight end Brock Wright in next year’s recruiting class (they won’t sign until February 2017). He had early offers from plenty of the top programs around the country, but picked Notre Dame over finalist Ohio State, a nice recruiting victory for Scott Booker and Brian Kelly.

Kmet talked about the decision with Irish 247 who broke the news:

“I think it was just a gut feeling knowing it was Notre Dame,” Kmet to Irish 247. “I didn’t want to pass on playing for that program and attending that university. It’s always been the school I wanted an offer from and Ohio State made it really close, but I just couldn’t pass on Notre Dame.”