Johnny Manziel was only able to play the second 30 minutes of Texas A&M’s season opener against Rice. He was suspended for the first half following the autograph-for-pay scandal/non-scandal.
The defending Heisman Trophy winner made the most of his time, tossing three touchdown passes – and collecting an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for trash-talking an obviously inferior Rice team. There was also the infamous air autograph earlier in the game.
What many in the media have failed to relay is the fact that Rice was doing just as much talking, especially their marching band, who was decked out in Johnny Manziel autographed t-shirts and instruments. But when you’re a Heisman Trophy winner you are expected to rise above trash talk and be a leader.
Nearly everybody under the sun has chimed in on Manziel, including one of the all-time greatest coaches in Barry Switzer. The former Oklahoma and Dallas Cowboys leader was not the least bit impressed.
“I’m certainly disappointed in his actions. … For him to act so arrogant I wanted to jerk his face mask and I wanted to grab him. Of course you get fired for that now; in the old days you could get away with that,” Switzer said on ESPN radio. “It’s the world we live in. It’s a misplaced value system. When I see this happen I wonder where the core value system comes from, if he has a core value system. This young man needs a damn hell of a lot of development.”
Tell us how you really feel, Switzer.
Over 11 seasons at Norman, Switzer engineered three national title-winning years. He also won a Super Bowl in Dallas. He knows a thing or two about talent, but he also understands the very distinct difference between succeeding against teenagers and 20 year olds versus succeeding against grown men.
“Without a doubt he has terrific ability, he’s electric, he’s got great gears and he’s running full speed at two steps. Great vision,” Switzer added. “But let me tell you something, I don’t know if he can throw the football well enough or is tall enough to play the game (in the NFL). Certainly, he’s not disciplined enough.”
We have heard one talking head after another voice their opinion on the enigmatic talent. However, this is one of the first times a man of few – but sharp – words has discussed Manziel with such naked animosity.
It seems one of the biggest problems Manziel has had during his meteoric rise to fame has been his acute sensitivity to haters and trolls on social media.
Radio is an older form of communication, but hopefully Johnny Football hears this and is motivated to develop into a leader on and off the football field.