Money Money Manziel

Johnny Manziel played brilliantly in the second half of Texas A&M’s opener against Rice. He is a very talented football player.

But he shouldn’t have been out there.

The NCAA investigated Manziel’s autograph signing, supposedly found no evidence of Manziel taking money for signing autographs, and barely slapped him on the wrist with a 1/2 game suspension for failing to prevent others from making money from his likeness.

Here is a portion of the NCAA’s post-investigation statement:

Texas A&M University and the NCAA confirmed today that there is no evidence that quarterback Johnny Manziel received money in exchange for autographs, based on currently available information and statements by Manziel. [ref]

Note the caveat, “based on currently available information”. Note also that the NCAA had to rely on “statements by Manziel”. Perhaps that’s the only information they could get on the matter.

I guess there is an eensy weensy possibility that Manziel spent hours tediously autographing 1000s of items for memorabilia brokers without receiving compensation.  I, for one, don’t buy it.

Innocent until proven guilty, yes. However, if the NCAA has any integrity at all they will continue the investigation, will uncover solid evidence of payment (I predict), and will throw the book at Manziel.

Until then, the NCAA will have to endure having its nose rubbed in it, as Manziel arrogantly celebrates his on-the-field successes with a two-handed “money money” sign, rubbing his thumbs against his first and second fingers.

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