Darth Wolverine

June 29th, 2011 at 11:53 AM ^

But of COURSE Brian Kelly won't suspend him for a long period of time or for the big games. We all know that he will be there in uniform in Ann Arbor and in the starting lineup.

"Everything is going as I have foreseen." <evil laugh>


June 29th, 2011 at 12:03 PM ^

I believe another item of note is that he was sentenced to one year of jail time but that was supended due to a plea argreement.  MGoLawyers, correct me if I'm wrong, but does this mean that if Floyd doesn't adhere to the terms of his plea agreement (i.e. breaks probation) then he gets sent to jail for one year?


June 29th, 2011 at 12:04 PM ^

Is it 1 year probation with no travel out-of-state?

If not, then Kelly got exactly what he wanted.

"I let the courts deal with it"


June 29th, 2011 at 12:05 PM ^

Ehhh, not to downgrade how serious a DUI charge is but it's his first offense.  What's a fair punishment? Hell, even Stonum is being given a chance to get back on the team provided he doesn't screw up anymore. 


June 29th, 2011 at 12:20 PM ^

For what it's worth, it was his third alcohol related offense and (I believe) a probation violation.  Notre Dame, as a university, doesn't normally take kindly to these things.

EDIT: This isn't an endorsement one way or another about the justification of his punishment.  ND is usually much harsher in terms of punishment from a university standpoint should he had been a non-athlete.  If memory serves, didn't ND permanently kick a basketball player off the team for a marijuana possession?  I mean, it could be apples to oranges, but in my opinion marijuana possession is a lesser crime than driving drunk.

The Lurking Irish

June 29th, 2011 at 6:42 PM ^

From the ND perspective my best speculation/insight on the topic is this:

The past decisions made that are commonly cited (K-Mac for Pot posession, Joseph Fauria for supposedly streaking/public intox, Will Yeatman - i believe drove a golf cart drunk on campus etc.) all were made under prior ResLife leadership. The changing of the leaders in July of 2010 seems to have had a marked impact on the handling of athlete's disciplinary issues, most notably in the public's eye w/Floyd. As an alum my own opinion is that the real change is to move punishment to athletes in line with what it is for the rest of the student body. Its tough to lay out a real strong assertion on that front because the true details on a lot of situations are unclear/small sample size etc. But it is my general sense that the types of punishment being handed out now are more in line with what a typical student would get. My personal opinion is that this is where ND should head as they had been essentially making public examples out of their athletes while students in similar circumstances were getting (typically) more lenient punishment. Obviously its tough - you have to toe a difficult line here of being fair but not going full on MSU/SEC where you encourage an anything goes environment either.

I'm not sure that personally  agree with Kelly's position that he will face an all-or-none suspension, I had sort of expected him to hand out a suspension for the USF game, but having seen/heard about the change in direction over the last 12 months I'm not entirely shocked either.

D.C. Dave

June 29th, 2011 at 12:15 PM ^

I know it's fashionable to criticize other schools for not bringing the hammer down on players who get in trouble, but I really can't see the point of suspending a guy from playing because he pleaded guilty to a DUI -- if he toes the line and understands the seriousness of what he did.

Floyd took responsibility and the judge handed down a number of stipulations tied to the probation -- ignition-control device, mandatory community service, classroom time. It was not a blowoff sentence. And if Floyd screws up again, he's back in court and could see jail time.

But he's satisfied the legal end of things and he has owned up to his poor judgment. His previous drinking issues were not driving related, they were for "underage" drinking, and the only difference between Floyd and any of us is he got caught. I mean, he was 19 when he got caught the first time, 20 the second time. Only in America can you go to war at age 18 and legally have a beer three years later.

Driving while drunk is a different story and there's no reason or excuse for that.

Our own Darryl Stonum is a different story. His driving while impaired was a second conviction. Hard to say whether Hoke will let him come back, but if Stonum is done, he's got no one to blame but himself.

But if Floyd meets the requirements of the judge's ruling, he should play. I know he's a great receiver and we'd probably have a better chance of beating Notre Dame if he is not on the field. And I'd love to beat Notre Dame, which I hope we do even with Floyd out there.



June 29th, 2011 at 1:16 PM ^

I see that you're trying to make the connection of "If he's completed his punishment legally, he should be able to play", but I and many others fail to agree with you.  We're not saying Floyd should be locked up for what he did, or that he should never be allowed to get a job, or graduate, or live his life as a normal person would. 

You need to differentiate between what is a right and what is a privilege.  College students—especially Division I athletes in major programs-- are, and should be, held to higher standards.  If a regular student receives multiple drinking offenses and/or a DUI, they can be subject to scrutiny from their University, up to no longer being allowed to attend said school.  If this were any other student on a full ride scholarship for, say, academic purposes, at a minimum their scholarship would have been revoked.

In terms of punishment, I think the lowest grade of disciplinary action for Mr. Floyd would be a suspension of some type.  Somebody else referenced Kyle McAlarney on this board.  McAlarney was a star basketball player for ND who was suspended for an entire semester and forced to reapply to school for a first offense marijuana possession.  I find it very coincidental that since Brian Kelly has come into power at ND, after his first incident with a player brushing up with the law, the player was let go with no suspension for the exact same offense as McAlarney (I’m speaking of Mike Ragone).  Immediately after which, the head of Res Life stepped down with no explanation, and the new head since has yet to hand out a single punishment for any football player caught breaking the law or team rules.  Furthermore, the new head of ResLife even went so far as to make the move of deferring to Kelly for the punishment of Floyd, something that has never been done in the history of Notre Dame.

Personally, I think ND has given up a lot for the cost to win, and Kelly is willing to do whatever it takes.  It’s really disappointing to see in a school that I grew up admiring.  In my honest opinion, Kelly is the new Urban Meyer in terms of punishment.    


June 29th, 2011 at 2:45 PM ^

i'm not sure how the multiple points you're making come together:

1. playing d1 football on scholarship is a privilege. others extended similar privileges would be more severely punished for a dui.

2. the appropriate level of punishment for floyd is suspension, at least.

3. notre dame has been inconsistent with their punishments

on #1: it makes about as little sense for a school to revoke an academic scholarship for a dui as it does for an athletic scholarship. that would be quite the zero tolerance policy. moreover, i just don't think this is true...duis are unfortunatley very common - we'd hear about this all the time if it was happening. i think its hard to make the case that floyd is getting off easier than a kid that was on scholarship for some other reason — regardless of how bad his offense may have been, he's had his name all over the media (and this board) for his offense. everybody knows that michael floyd got a dui. nobody knows if joe scholarship gets one.

on #2: how do you come to this conclusion? this is always the part that seems hard to me. what is the appropriate punishment for an athlete for an offense that has nothing to do with sports. should be be suspended because of a moral failing? a legal one? or just because it will serve as a deterrent to other kids?

on #3: i 100% agree. although, i'm not sure if the new world order is better or worse than the old world order which was frankly absurd. 


June 29th, 2011 at 4:00 PM ^

On your #1:  Firstly, I am not recommending that they revoke his academic scholarship.  I was merely stating that in incidents wherein you have others with academic scholarships but are unable to suspend them from play, such a punishment does occur.  And although this is the internet and anybody can say anything, I actually work in a law office wherein we regularly represent students who find themselves in this situation.  So, yes, it does happen, and much more often than you would think. 

Furthermore, we don’t even need to speculate about all of this in the first place.  As I stated in my previous post, although you, and I, and the rest of the world may find it ridiculous to revoke Floyd’s scholarship, the fact of the matter is that Notre Dame doesn’t.  How do we know this?  Because, as I stated, they did revoke McAlarney’s scholarship for a first offense minor in possession, a much lesser offense than Floyd’s. 

On your #2: I don’t know that it matters the reason, be it moral, legal, etc.  My only justification for a suspension that has nothing to do with sports is that I’m pretty sure a DUI and a third drinking offense is a violation of team rules at every program across the country.  If somebody violates team rules multiple times, and in a fashion where the offenses become progressively more egregious, then I would think some sort of suspension is finally in order.  Such is my justification.

On your # 3: No need for futher comment--agreed.

D.C. Dave

June 29th, 2011 at 3:03 PM ^

There are lots of ways to look at this, and I'm not reaching any conclusions about Kelley overall. I definitely sense he is a win-at-all-costs type and he exudes arrogance, whereas I tend to like coaches who are both humble and preach humility. But despite my view of Kelley and skepticism about the coach's motivation for keeping Floyd on the team, I'm trying to limit my view to what's fair to Floyd. And let me tell you, I wish he wasn't on Notre Dame's team at all, but that's not about the DUI, it's because I've had to watch him catch what seems like 50 passes against us the past two years. I'll buy the Michigan coaching staff a keg if they'll figure out a way to stop him.

I do not think it's correct that any other student on a full-ride academic scholarship would lose that scholarship for similar drinking offenses. There are no hard rules on that. Those are all handled on a case-by-case basis, and that's how it should be.

My view is simply that this was a first offense and that I consider the DUI a serious offense. I don't hold the view that tickets for underage drinking should mean all that much. Yes, it's illegal to drink a beer at age 20. Cops write up kids all the time for it. Who knows how many Michigan players currently on the team have the occasional beer or more? Our new head coach admits he spent his first two years as a player at Ball State drinking all the time, and he grew out of it and matured. OK, so Brady Hoke didn't get caught, but he did it and he talks openly about it. My only point in that regard is I don't think Floyd's two underage drinking offenses should have any bearing on what punishment Notre Dame hands down on him for the DUI.

All I am saying is what I would do, and that would be to view this as a mistake by Floyd, and one that has required him to put in a lot of time to attend court-ordered courses on the perils of drunk driving, and the potential human costs of drunk driving. And I can definitely see suspending him for a game or two or three, but on that count I'd base a lot on the kid's attitude since the incident, his level of remorse and follow-through to prove he's learned from it. But I think to go beyond say, 25 percent of the season, that is something I just don't agree with. Sure, it's a privilege to play Division I football. No argument there. All I am saying is I would not revoke that privilege, for an entire season, because of this offense, particularly given how Floyd has conducted himself since it happened and that there is a tangible list of things ordered by the judge that provide a way to measure his progress and whether he really has learned from it. I don't think kicking him off the team for his final season increases that learning.


June 29th, 2011 at 12:21 PM ^

the "its his 3rd offense" line misses the mark.

his first two offenses were effectively for minor in possession type issues. notre dame tends to have a fairly heavy hand witht the identification of these issues — a sizable chunk of the nd student body gets dinged with one at some point. 

the dui is a big deal, but most wouldn't argue that a single dui should lead to prolonged suspension. consequently, the case for floyd getting a severe penalty from the coach is largely predicated on this being his "3rd offense." and while that's true in a sense, its not like his first 2 offenses were felonies...closer to jaywalking.

i'm not at all sure what the appropriate football penalty is here and i'm obviously biased. but, if you don't lend a lot weight to his prior events, then i don't think its obvious  that the legal penalties (license suspension, probation, counselling, et al) combined with the media attention (i think he's had at least 4 different front page espn.com articles on the issue) and the administrative slap on the wirst from the football program in the context of 9 months of carefully regulated good behavior are unduly lenient.


June 29th, 2011 at 12:33 PM ^

All the above are good points and worthy of debate (especially considering as UM fans we have Stonum and his "punishment" at issue).

However, as a coach and as a University of higher learning, I can only assume the last thing you want (or should do?) is set a tone in your program of "Well, Michael got 2 alcohol infractions, and then didn't learn his lesson and got a DUI on top of that and he gets to play... so why not me"

But then this is ND's problem - whatever  ground rules Kelly wants to set and whether the University allows him to skirt their system of past examples, so be it.   The track for the teams' future behaviors may be set in motion.  Their problem, not ours.

But, I hope our new Coach has balls and doesn't let the players, their families, recruits, or the fan base believe that 3 strikes you're not out is the way a coach should help kids become men.

Exit SoapBox.




June 29th, 2011 at 1:12 PM ^

I think this is an interesting point - is the point of punishment from the perspective of a football coach about meting out some sort of appropriate justice or about trying to control the behavior of your other football players?

This may actually explain why Kelly has "punished" Floyd extensively in the eyes of the team — kicking him out of spring practice, repeatedly talking about his disappointment publicly, taking away his captaincy, enforcing regular meetings and "good behavior" etc. Moreover, this seems like a fairly reasonable reasonable explanation for football coaches oftentimes hand down fairly lenient sentences when the media and opposing fans are going to beat them up — they dont' care about the media, they care about the message to their team. If you make a player suffer enough from the perspective of his teammates you conceivably create an adequate disincentive to keep others from going down the same track.

The trick, it seems if you're a coach, is figuring out if this middle road stuff actually works. Do you need to drop the hammer on your players in order to get others in line or does the sound-and-fury-but-no-suspensions trick get it done? Obviously, your longterm incentive is to make sure that kids stay out of trouble, but not to piss them off so badly that they either quit on you or transfer...I'd venture that the effect is highly contingent on a ton of contextual circumstances and the key as a coach is knowing when a glorified slap in the wrist will be adequate and when you need to really drop the hammer.



June 29th, 2011 at 12:43 PM ^

If Floyd doesn't sit for a single quarter, though, I'm going to roll my eyes extra hard the next time I hear about how ND operates at a higher standard than everyone else. 

Captain Scumbag

June 29th, 2011 at 3:35 PM ^

Why is it that folks can never seem to get the name of ND's coach right? For the longest time, you'd hear folks talking about Coach Davies or Coach Weiss. For a while, it looked like Coach Meyers would take over the Irish until he took over Florida and changed his name to Meyer. Now they've got this new fella, Coach Kelley?


I guess everybody like Coach Willingham enough to get his name right. That's probably because he sucked.

D.C. Dave

June 30th, 2011 at 12:05 AM ^

It's not that we can't get the Notre Dame coach's name right, it's that we don't want to. I don't want to like the Irish coach, and the past two hires, they've made that an easy call. I don't dislike the players, those guys are competitors. But I don't like the chubby leprechaun. Coach Hoke has 'Ohio,' I've got this guy, Coach Bryan Kelley.


June 29th, 2011 at 5:09 PM ^

I don't know if this has popped up on this topic but I found this little tidbit on ESPN's take a little sketch

"Coach Brian Kelly suspended Floyd, Notre Dame's leading receiver last season, after his arrest. Earlier this month, the coach said Floyd would be allowed to participate in voluntary workouts with the team this summer and strength and conditioning exercises supervised by staff."

Is it saying Floyd must be supervised while out there or he has to report to the coaches? Because if he is being supervised while working out with the TEAM by a STAFF member, is this not an NCAA violation? or is this just piss poor standard ESPN reporting?

Just something that stuck out to me.  I could be wrong.