Photo credit: thenewsportsguru.com
Story via ESPN
In a move that has puzzled many who have followed the Johnny Manziel saga closely, the NCAA has decided to suspend the superstar sophomore for one half of the season opener. No, not one half of the season. Manziel will start the season opener against the Rice Owls on the bench, and return to the field in the second half of the game.
The NCAA has acknowledge that Manziel did not receive money for signing autographs, which explains his very modest punishment compared to similar cases in recent memory. Manziel has been under investigation of violating the amateurism rules of the NCAA that could have threatened his eligibility, though this agreement now closes the book on that case.
Unsurprisingly, Texans A&M coach Ken Sumlin said that he is not too worried about how the Aggies will respond in Manziels brief absence, and there is reportedly a fierce(?) competition brewing between junior Matt Joeckel and freshman Kenny Hill over who will start the season under center for Texas A&M. Sumlin credits the offensive line for his confidence in his team, citing them as the reason they can be successful with or without Manziel.
“We’ve got a really solid offensive line which takes a little bit of the pressure off Matt and Kenny,” Sumlin said. “When Johnny’s taking snaps, when he’s in there, he’s really trying to help the perimeter guys. Our offensive line gives us an opportunity to rotate those quarterbacks and have them be successful.”
Though Texas A&M staff and players were instructed earlier this week not to talk about Manziel’s issues, Sumlin finally broke the silence on the subject.
“Johnny’s handled it very well,” Sumlin said. “Everything around football, he’s been extremely sharp and focused.”
After all that Johnny Manziel has been through, it’s bittersweet seeing him get through this with a slap on the wrist. Most of his troubles have been self inflicted wounds, though you’d hate to see a talent like Manziel lose his eligibility and lower his chances of being successful in the NFL. Hopefully this is unusual slap on the wrist is a wake up call for the superstar signal caller, as the only thing currently standing in the way of him and a successful NFL career is a young man named Johnny Manziel.