When the latest round of allegations against Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel came out, I seriously considered remaining reticent with my point of view. However, the media overload that all of us have been forced to endure in light of it has forced my hand, so to speak, but not for the reasons you may think.
The long and the short of this latest incident is this: Manziel reportedly accepted money for his signature on a number of items of sports memorabilia. The exact number of items and what they were is not definite, but there has been quite a bit of speculation.
However, this is irrelevant insofar that any student athlete that profits in a manner such as this is in violation of an NCAA bylaw and subject to punishment for it. Precedent in this matter indicates that, should he be found to have violated the bylaw, he could be suspended for four or five games at some point in the 2013 college football season.
At this point, in any reasonable discussion on the matter would turn to whether or not Manziel did what he is being accused of, what sort of facts the NCAA has, what his punishment will be if he’s found guilty and what potential long-term effects this could have on him, the Aggies program and his NFL draft status.
But no, that would be too easy.
Instead, the various facets of the media have instead chosen to take this as their chance to climb on their pulpit about amateurism in college athletics, and how Johnny Football has been wronged.
If you believe the rules should be changed, so be it. But that changes nothing about the case at hand. You know, the one where the rules are still in place.
So, if you are going to write an article that turns into a whiny diatribe about the evils of college football and the poor student athlete, don’t hide it behind a headline that might lead me to believe the content is actually going to be about the case.
It’s disingenuous, and misleads those of us who simply want to follow the Manziel case and not be subjected to multiple paragraphs of querulous rambling about the evil empire. It’s just poor taste looking for clicks.