A Name to Know: Michael Floyd Prepared for Huge Year at Notre Dame

Collin O'ConnorCorrespondent IAugust 13, 2010

CHAPEL HILL, NC - OCTOBER 11:  Michael Floyd  #3 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish onfield against the North Carolina Tar Heels at Kenan Stadium October 11, 2008 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Ranked as the No. 6 receiver in the 2008 recruiting class, Michael Floyd chose to attend Notre Dame despite also having offers from Florida, Miami, Michigan, and Ohio State.

He was no doubt a great grab for the Fighting Irish to go along with Kyle Rudolph and Dayne Crist, two other starters from the 2008 class.

In Floyd's first season for Notre Dame, he stepped in as a key contributor. Jimmy Clausen definitely started targeting this freshman right out of the gate.

Floyd had 48 receptions and 719 yards receiving on the year with seven touchdowns. Right away, there were signs in him showing that he could eventually be a top wideout in the nation.

Then, in his sophomore year, he was off to a great start as well. He stacked up 189 yards in the first-game blowout against Nevada and added 131 in week two's loss to Michigan.

Michael Floyd was on his way to having a historic season until an injury caused him to miss five games in the middle of the season.

However, he still managed to rack up 785 yards with 44 receptions on the year. There's absolutely no question that he would have ended up with over 1,000 yards receiving if he had stayed healthy the whole season.

With that said, this year's a whole new year for Floyd and the rest of the Fighting Irish. With a new coach and a new quarterback, he will have to transition. The spread offense that Kelly brings in, though, will benefit Floyd's style.

Last year in Cincinnati under Kelly's offense, quarterbacks would throw over 40 times a game. If Coach Kelly goes with the same strategy this season, which is likely, a lot of those 40 attempts will be thrown at Michael Floyd.

The numbers that he put up last season will be surpassed early, and he will be a lock for 1,000 yards, if not 1,500.

As long as Floyd stays healthy, he can be a Heisman candidate and bring Notre Dame fans flashbacks of when Brady Quinn and Jeff Samardzija used to hook up.

That said, it will also have a lot to do with Dayne Crist. The new starting quarterback for Notre Dame this season spent the last two studying Jimmy Clausen under Charlie Weis' system. While that experience is great for him, there's a whole new system being thrown at him. It will be tough to adjust, but Kelly says that he has been taking steps towards being successful all through the spring and summer.

The comforting thought in Crist's mind has to be that Floyd will always be a target that will bail him out of tough situations.

This season is definitely going to be an interesting one in South Bend, and Michael Floyd will bring them a lot of national attention—especially since he will be one of the top NFL prospects at his position if he decides to leave after this year.

One thing is for sure, though: He will have a huge season in South Bend this year.