Did Johnny Manziel become college football’s villain?

NCAA Football: SEC Media Day

Thankfully the football season is mere days away. If not, Johnny Manziel’s offseason was about to mirror the path of Breaking Bad’s Walter White. A downward spiral turning a nice young man into an utter monster. That’s what the media would have you believe, at least.

The offseason progression of having the nerve to sit court-side at NBA games to letting loose a tweet of frustration to standing up the Mannings to allegedly signing autographs for some cash has been quite the narrative over the last 6-7 months.

The media did their best to turn these random events into a Shakespearean story arc, a tragedy involving college football biggest name.

It didn’t work.

After an unsuccessful attempt to show Johnny who’s boss at Media Days, the media went into overdrive by utilizing a segment of the population known for their honestly, integrity and general good will towards the public. Yep, we’re talking about autograph brokers.

The media coverage of Johnny this offseason mirrored that of recent years of Tim Tebow coverage: lots of talk about nothing.

To recap the offseason, Johnny essentially did nothing worth discussing other than allegedly signing autographs. The one thing he allegedly did do worth discussing, the majority of fans think he should be allowed to do! So, finally, one thing worth mentioning gets alleged, and we can’t prove it – even if we could, the public supports Manziel in it! Yes, Manziel is the next Heisenberg, alright.

My favorite part of the Manziel drama is that when the media runs cold of Johnny Heisenberg headlines, they turn to the discussion of Johnny NFL Prospect. He could never make it in the NFL! His judgment isn’t NFL QB material. None of that matters. Yes, in the NFL, the QB’s intelligence, decision making, reads all matter tremendously.

You know what matters in college football? Having the best athlete on the field. Whether or not Manziel is NFL material is irrelevant at this point. Let me tell you what is college football material. Johnny Manziel. Johnny Football. 

Johnny Manziel is now days away from taking the field for the first time in a live football game since he torched Bob Stoops in the Cotton Bowl.

Related: 2013 SEC preseason power rankings

This kid is going to light it up starting week 1. It doesn’t matter if opposing defenses have been prepping for Johnny Football. Why do we fail to recognize that Kevin Sumlin has been prepping for the opposing defenses? The Aggies have enough weapons and an offensive system that is very difficult to stop. When you stop the system, Manziel still breaks loose half the time.

What continues to be lost in the Manziel nonsense is just how spectacular of a football player this kid is. Of course, there will be plenty of idiots who will refuse to enjoy Manziel tearing up opposing defenses for 400+ yards at a time. They would rather call him cocky or arrogant, instead of enjoying the show.

My prediction is that Manziel will remind the world just how incredible he is during the first two outings of the 2013 season. Manziel is going to take out all of the frustration with this past offseason on the defenses of Rice and Sam Houston. It’s going to be a blood bath. Then, we can settle down and focus on the matchup that we used to be excited about. Texas A&M and Alabama on September 14th.

Look, let’s just agree to this. Manziel maybe could have handled the offseason better. If he signed autographs for cash, it was poor judgment simply because it’s an NCAA rule. Other than that, let’s root for the kid to take the field and light it up. Why not? Don’t we love watching somebody like Manziel? Don’t be that idiot who refuses to enjoy it.

Photo Credit: Brett Davis-US PRESSWIRE

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COMMENTS

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  • So let me get this straight…you believe that if Johnny got paid for autographs they should just let it slide? And this is based on him being “Johnny Football”? What about the other student athletes who actually follow the rules and don’t have anywhere near the wealth that Johnny SilverSpoon and his ridiculous parents have? Would that be fair to them? Or the kids that have been suspended for much less? Maybe we should just do away with suspensions in general so that we can see him play. I mean Im with ya on the silliness of some of these “stories” but I’m not on board with making exceptions for any one player. We enjoyed football before he came…and we will enjoy football when he’s gone.

    • did you even read the article? very well written in that the author tried to separate the off the field issues and manziel on the field possibilities – tying johnny silverspoon and tebow discussions as offseason excess perpetuated by the various media types – quit hatin bulldog and get ready to play some football in atlanta against the new SEC West champion

  • The Difference between Johnny and Tebow is that Tebow is being a positive role model.not being known for getting drunk, partying, breaking Ncaa Rules. That being said I agree 100% that Sumlin has been getting ready for football but for all the talk and Getting Kicked out of a passing camp hosted by the Manninga missing a chance to work on his mechanics with the best it just doesn’t seem that Johnny Manziel is prepared for the new season

    • he already worked on his mechanics with the best – the QB guru out in california, not the mannings camp – that was a PR thing where he would be workin with little leaguers – or HS players – or whatever – but he was not there to work on his mechanics

  • Regarding being a college man who like to party, travel, attend big events, People forgive Manziel and they should,…… people admire Tebow and they should. Regarding being paid for autographs, when I see the undisputed evidence from trustworthy people that this happened then I’ll just think Manziel was reckless instead of trying to make a big cash in. Right now it just looks like the autograph people are trying to make money by stretching a story more than exposing some big breech of amateurism. It is like being accused of jaywalking. Who cares, it shouldn’t happen, we don’t want it, but the enforcement of this shouldn’t be a national race changing event. Regarding Manziel being a ‘bad guy’, no sorry, his behavior on the field and off the field reflect. We want football players to be creative and do the unexpected. We also admire structure and discipline. As long as coaches, and players do ruin the game with extreme trends we can enjoy all the personal statements players make. It is much more intolerable that football players beat people up, rape people, etc.

    • agreed wolfman – way to read the whole article and not let media hype influence you judgement – but manziel was reckless in that he put himself in a situation that could be construed as wrong by fans and media alike!~

  • He can’t really be compared to media attention with Tebow because their media attention comes from two different ends of the spectrum. The media circus surrounded Tebow to try and see him slip up. They surround Manziel because he constantly slips up, according to them, and it gives them something to talk about. But he is definitely a fun player to watch and regardless of how anybody feels about the situation, he hasn’t been proven guilty of any wrongdoing so he is completely eligible, as of right now, to play. And I couldn’t be more excited to see what he does this year

    • Agreed 100%. I’d say Kevin hit the nail on the head with this article….just look at the first guy’s comments. For a lot of people Manziel has become an enemy/villain. I agree that CFB fans will always thrive, but it is crazy to see the animosity towards Manziel. Kevin great article. If JFF plays great, if not..well it still feels good to be a part of the SEC.

      Cheers to the SEC taking home another Nat’l Championship
      Cheers to the SEC taking home the Heisman
      Cheers to CFB starting next week

  • He’s not a villain but if he did break rules he should be punished. It doesn’t matter if it’s a rule we like or not the fact is it is a rule. I don’t like the fact that seat belt usage or helmet laws exist but they do and if I break the law/rule I get punished for it. Until there is arule that says getting paid for signing autographs is ok, then Johnny Football should be suspended or whatever the NCAA determines. I think the NCAA is way over powering anyway but the fact is they exist, if there are going to be rules they must be followed otherwise why do we have the NCAA anyway? You can’t just enforce certain rules, at certain times and only for certain people. It has to be across the board and enforced on whatever player team it falls on, no matter of it’s Alabama, Texas A&M, Fresno State or the California School for the Deaf and Blind. I’m ready to get football started and put these stories behind us. Let’s just talk about football.

    • If it was anyone but the “golden boy aka spoiled brat” Johnny Football, they would have found themselves in a world of trouble. It’s just like Aaron Hernandez, if the coaching staff @ Florida had reined him in, he MIGHT have avoided what he is now facing & PEOPLE would still be alive.

  • This little SPOILED BRAT DIVA needs to be knocked down SEVERAL notches. I would have loved to see him disrespect Coach Nick Saban. His happy little “diva butt” would most likely be kicked off the team. This kid is headed for MAJOR trouble if his PARENTS & THE COACHING staff do NOT get a handle on him. He thinks he is GOD’S GIFT to football & the world. I hate to be the one to break the news to him…………he’s anything but that. Yeah, he’s good, but it takes more than just “skill” to be an EXCELLENT athlete. This kid makes Cam Newton & “The Honey Badger” look like armature pricks. I sincerely hope that he GROWS UP & stops acting like a SPOILED BRAT, but if he chooses not to, I pray someone comes along & PUTS HIM IN HIS PLACE. (*Don’t get me hell over using caps….I am stressing intent)