When Robert Griffin III left Baylor to become the second overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, the starting quarterback job suddenly was thrust into the lap of Nick Florence. In taking over for Griffin III, Florence passed for well over 4,000 yards and totaled over 40 touchdowns but despite this he’s decided that he’s reached the extent in which he wants to follow in Griffin III’s footsteps and won’t progress his football career any further than the college level.
Florence says the decision to not play in the NFL and to end his football days in college was motivated by the fact that he wants to spend time with his wife and finish his master’s degree.
“I’ve decided to hang up my cleats and finish my master’s in December,” Florence said. “My wife and I have spent the last one and a half months talking about it, and it all came down to what we wanted in life, and it didn’t include playing football.”
Without football in his life, Florence says he plans on taking 26 more hours of class over the next semester and a half to complete his master’s degree. He says he’ll miss football but he’ll always have the memories of his amazing 2012 season in which he ranked second in the nation in total offense.
“Oh yeah, I’m going to miss it,” Florence said. “I’ve been doing it my whole life. I don’t know whether I would have been drafted, but I have no doubt that I could have made a team. But I’ll look back and have a lot of great memories.”
Florence deserves a lot of credit for making a decision not a lot of people are capable of making. Florence didn’t have a very good draft profile, but he would have gotten a third string job somewhere in the NFL. But a lot of guys gamble with question draft stock and end up just wasting a period of their life that could have been better utilized doing something else.
We all love sports, but you need a life beyond it and Florence is setting himself up to be a very successful man.
While he’s hanging up the cleats, Florence hasn’t ruled out a return to football. But if he ever does return to the game, he’ll be using his master’s degree as a tool rather than his throwing arm.
“I’m not quite sure what I want to do, but I want it to be something involving sports and business, “ Florence said