Image courtesy of Maddie Malhotra/Getty Images
The Zay Flowers Era has ended at Boston College.
Everyone knew it was coming, but it’s still like finding out bad news when you didn’t expect it.
On Thursday, Flowers sent out a social media post thanking his family and Boston College before officially declaring.
“First off I would like to thank everyone who has helped me along my journey,” Flowers wrote. “My greatest thank you goes to my dad for being there with me every step of the way, and always helping me make some of the hardest decisions of my life. For years I watched how hard you worked to provide for me and my siblings, which showed me the work ethic that has gotten me this far. Hearing you wake up at 4am every day to bring loads of clothes to the wash house before work, and somehow getting 10 of us into the truck for little league every Saturday are the things that prepared me for this- so thank you.
“Next I would like to say thank you to coach Hafley, my team, and the Boston College community for giving me a chance to live out my childhood dreams on and off of the field. Boston College allowed me to create family outside of mine, it has given me life long friends, and it gave me a home. All I ever wanted was the chance to prove to myself that I could do it, and you all gave me that opportunity to be great so I will forever be thankful.
“Lastly I would like to thank the families, friends, and my siblings back in Florida who have believed in me from day one and supported me through everything. Y’all have been my biggest fans and have given me the motivation to get here and do what I always said I would. To the ones that have stuck by my side for all these years, I thank you for your loyalty and support. I would also like to thank Coach Tusz, my Athletics trainer Mike. Schatz our equipment manager, and their staff for helping me develop and take care of my body over these past four seasons.
“To my Mom and Martin- thank you for looking over me and guiding me in the best directions. I wish y’all were here to see my growth and the type of man that l’m becoming,” he wrote. “It’s hard knowing y’all aren’t here with me on this journey of chasing my dream, but my pain is motivation and with y’all behind me I can accomplish anything. In honor of you both, I would like to announce that I will be declaring for the 2023 NFL Draft.”
Flowers’ ability to connect with anybody in a room with him is something that will be of the utmost importance when he’s getting assimilated to an NFL locker room. Whether it was a teammate or a media member, Flowers had an ability to truly get to a 1-on-1 level with anyone he came into contact with. His willingness to talk and give insightful answers during this tumultuous season is nothing short of remarkable, given how little he owes anyone.
Jeff Hafley raved throughout the season about Zay’s willingness to continue competing and setting an example for younger guys despite a losing record. With millions of dollars at stake in the NFL Draft, Flowers easily could have tapped out and just focused on himself. Instead, the superstar wide receiver was downfield blocking and making sure guys like Joe Griffin and other young players were working their asses off.
Flowers’ production on the field will be nearly impossible to replace, but it’s his role model status for other players in the program that will be the biggest loss. Every single receiving record at Boston College now belongs to Flowers and will probably belong to him for quite some time, but his impact off the field will be felt for years and years to come.