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Notre Dame Football: One Year From Today!

Jeff KalafaAnalyst IIIDecember 13, 2009

22 Sep 2001: An American flag adorns the helmuts of Notre Dame players when Notre Dame takes on Michigan State at South Bend, Indiana. DIGITAL IMAGE  Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Daniel/ALLSPORT
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The following is based on an article written by Bleacher Report's Frank Irizarry entitled "National Communists Against Athletes"

Fast Forward to early December 2010.  The Notre Dame Fighting Irish have remarkably completed an undefeated season.  Brian Kelly's first year as head coach has been an incredible success.

Notre Dame finishes first in the BCS rankings and is getting ready to play the SEC Champion, LSU, in the National Championship Game.

The passing combination of Dayne Crist to Michael Floyd has smashed every record  Jimmy Clausen and Golden Tate held.  Last night, on national T.V., Michael Floyd became the first wide receiver to win the Heisman Trophy since Michigan's Desmond Howard.

There's a knock on Coach Kelly's office door:

BK:  Who's there?

MF: It's Michael Floyd coach, can I talk to you?

BK:  Any Heisman winner can talk to me, come in and sit down.

Michael Floyd enters Coach Kelly's office:

BK:  What's on your mind Michael?

MF:  We need to talk coach, I've got something to say and I wanted to make sure you heard it from me first.

BK:  Whatever it is Michael, you can tell me.  You can tell me anything, I'm your coach.

MF:  Coach, I've decided not to play in the National Championship game.

BK:  Are you crazy?  What are you talking about!

MF: Coach, I've decided not to play.

BK:  Michael, have a drink of water, look me in the eye and repeat what you just said.

MF: Coach, while at the Heisman Trophy awards, when you were talking to Chris Fowler, I was informed that there is a real good chance that I'm going to be the first player selected in the 2011 NFL draft.

BK: I could have told you that, you're far and away the best player in college football.

MF: Thank you coach.

BK: Michael continue what you are trying to tell me.

MF: Well, it looks like it's definite that the Buffalo Bills are going to have the first selection.  Their record is 1-11 right now.

BK: Yeah...

MF: Coach I've been a Buffalo Bills fan since I was three years old.  It's been my dream to some day play for the Buffalo Bills.

BK: What does that have to do with anything?  What does that have to do with the National Championship game?

MF: I've talked it over with my family, my girlfriend, and my old high school coach, and I decided that the best thing for me and my family is not to play in the National Championship game.

BK: I can't believe I'm hearing this.

MF: Coach I can't afford to let anything get in the way of my dream.  I've decided not to play another down of football until I sign that big, guaranteed contract they are going to offer me.  I hear it's going to be around $45 million over five years, with a $12 million dollar bonus.

I'm going to buy my parents a new home as soon as I get the money.

BK: Michael, you're crazy, you've got to play in the game.  You got us here.  We need you!

MF: Coach, I've decided.  It's settled.  I'm going to to to the combine, but I've played my last game in college.

BK: Michael, who has been talking to you?  Where did you get this crazy idea from?

MF: Coach, there are two reasons I've decided not to play.  First, I looked around and remembered that Tim Tebow slid all the way down to the third round last season.  I heard it was partly because of the concussion he received against Kentucky. 

A lot of teams shied away from him.  That cost him a lot of money, coach.

BK: What's the other reason Michael?

MF: Coach, I decided that I'm ready for the pros.  I've been ready for a while now. I probably could have gone last year if I would have been eligible to declare.

Coach, my mind is focused on the pros.  I already envision myself walking into the first mini camp the Bills are going to have.  I'm just not focused on the National Championship game.

BK; Michael where did you get this crazy idea from?  You've been the leader of our team.  Your teammates are going to hate you if you do this.

MF:  Coach, remember last year?  You were the coach of Cincinnati and your team was having a great year.  Remember how it became clear that you were going to end up going to a really good bowl.

BK:  Yes, I remember.

MF:  Remember how you felt?  A little confused, but you knew that Notre Dame was going to fire Charlie Weis, everyone knew that when we lost to Navy at home, right?

Coach, I remember that you said coming to Notre Dame was your childhood dream and it was an opportunity you just couldn't pass up.  Remember you said that once you knew you were going to get chosen that you couldn't think of anything but Notre Dame, and that's why you decided to leave as soon as you could.

BK:  Yes Michael, I remember.

MF: Coach, I feel the same way.  I'm focused entirely on the pros.  I don't want to take any more chances of getting hurt.  This is a once in a lifetime opportunity—to be the first pick in the draft and play for the Bills.

BK:  But Michael, your'e a player.  I'm a coach.  I never heard of anybody doing this before. All the coaches do it, it's just something that we have to do.  We don't want to, but it's just something we have to do.

Michael, this is the biggest game we've had in 20 years!  What are you thinking?

MF: I know coach.   I know it's a huge game for the program, and I know it's not normal for a player to do what I'm going to do, but Coach, there's always a first time.

BK: Huh? Michael do you have some free time?  I'm going to call Armando and see if he'll come down here.  I want him to hear what you're saying.

Coach Kelly gets on the phone and calls Armando Allen:

BK:  Armando, it's Coach, are you busy?

AA: Not really, what's up?

BK:  Michael Floyd's in my office and I was wondering if you could come down and join us.  We are talking over some pretty important plans for the team.

AA:  Anything wrong?

BK:  Just get down here as soon as you can!

Armando Allen enters Coach Kelly's office:

BK:  High Armando, thanks for getting here so fast.  Take a seat.

MF:  Hey Do, how's it going?

AA:  Good, what's going on?  Coach, why did you want me to come down?

BK:  Michael, tell Armando what you just told me.

MF:  Do, I'm not playing in the National Championship game against LSU.

AA:  Hm, that's interesting.

BK:  Armando, what do you mean that's interesting?

AA:  Coach, I'm really glad you asked me to come down here today, there's something I was putting off telling you.  This is as good a time as ever.

Coach, you know I'm a theatre major, right?

BK:  No, I thought you were a chemistry major.

AA:  Coach, I'm a theatre major.  I'm surprised you didn't remember.

BK:  Yeah, well!

AA:  Coach, I just didn't know how to tell you but I have a "friend of a friend of a friend" who got me a chance to audition for a part in a play last month.  The other night a got a call from the producer and he liked the way I handled the script.

Coach, the producer told me he wants to give me the supporting actor role in his new play but he said I have to start as soon as possible.

BK:  I can't believe what I'm hearing.  Armando! Are you putting me on?  Is this whole thing a put on?  If this is a joke, it's not funny!

AA:  Coach, I never joke about my career. 

BK:  Your career!  Armando, you're a football player.

AA:  Coach, I'd like to thank everything you've done for me, but my career, my dream lies in acting.  This play is a chance of a lifetime.  I have to strike while the iron is hot. I can't let this go by or I'll be doubting myself for the rest of my life.

BK:  What's the name of the play?

AA:  "See It Through"

BK:  What's it about?

AA:  It's about a guy who keeps quitting things.  He keeps quitting things cause he's just never satisfied and keeps thinking there's something better out there.  He quits every job he takes and keeps moving on to other jobs and in the process, he keeps burning bridges.

BK:  Is it a musical?

AA:  Yeah coach, it's a musical.  I have to sing two songs.  Would you like to hear a couple of bars from one of them?

BK:  Sing me into oblivion Armando.  Sing me into oblivion, please.

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