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5 NCAA Football Stars Who Are Anti-Johnny Manziel

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5 NCAA Football Stars Who Are Anti-Johnny Manziel

Johnny Football
Christopher Hanewinckel - USA TODAY Sports

Johnny Manziel has been making headlines since he stepped on the football field for the Texas A&M Aggies last fall. He stopped the presses when he went into Tuscaloosa and beat the Alabama Crimson Tide (the only team in the nation to do so last season) and again when he made history as the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy.

This offseason, however, none of the headlines Manziel has made have been for his talent on the football field. Instead, he’s making the news for his lavish spending habits, partying with co-eds and possibly accepted money for autograph sessions, which would make him ineligible for the 2013 season. He has become the poster-child for many of everything that is wrong with the “entitled athlete” that has become so common in today’s game.

Those most frustrated by the rise of Manziel, a.k.a the Money Badger, can still take solace that there are still “anti-Johnny Manziel” types of players out there. College football stars still exist that take care of their business on the football field, stay out of trouble off of it and put the success and well-being of their team ahead of any and all selfish ambitions. They may not make as many headlines on TMZ, but they’re out there and doing things the right way.

As long as there are football teams to be led, true leaders will step up and take the reins. So before you football purists get too discouraged by all of Johnny Football’s offseason shenanigans, let’s take a look at five NCAA football stars who are the anti-Johnny Manziel heading into the 2013 season.

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5. Jameis Winston

Jameis Winston
Melina Vestola - USA TODAY Sports

During media day, Jameis Winston made headlines by telling reporters that he didn’t want to come down with “Manziel disease,” and gave reporters in attendance permission to hit him if he started acting out. Winston has yet to take a snap for the Florida State Seminoles, but he’s already making waves with his attitude and ability to connect with the media. Will he stay true to his word and keep his focus on football as his star grows?

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4. A.J. McCarron

a.j. mccarron
Marvin Gentry - USA TODAY Sports

While A.J. McCarron may make a few headlines during the offseason thanks to his love of large tattoos, but when it comes time to taking care of business, there are few as good as the signal caller for the Alabama Crimson Tide. There are few leaders who get as much out of their team as efficiently as McCarron does and he’s able to do it all with little more than minor youthful rebellion and nothing that has gotten him into the cross-hairs of the NCAA infractions watchdogs. He understands there is a time for college fun and a time for taking care of business on the football field, and he’s not going to be letting the two sides get mixed.

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3. Aaron Murray

aaron murray
Marvin Gentry - USA TODAY Sports

While Johnny Football was frolicking on the beach with co-eds during his spring break, Aaron Murray was hunkered down in Athens working with his teammates to try and get the Georgia Bulldogs back to the SEC Championship. He’s been a leader for his team through three seasons already and has mostly done it out of the glare of the media spotlight. He is a strong leader for his team, but does it without the off-the-field distractions that have tripped up Johnny Football.

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2. Marcus Mariota

marcus mariota
Scott Olmos - USA TODAY Sports

Possibly the most similar player to Johnny Football on the field, Marcus Mariota has used his ability to quietly become one of the best quarterbacks in the Pac 12. He was also a phenomenal freshman last season, leading the Oregon Ducks to a Fiesta Bowl victory with a dynamic combination of playmaking ability both through the air and on the ground. His stats might have rivaled Johnny Football’s in 2012 if not for the Ducks’ offense getting pulled from most of their games by halftime. His skills are just beginning to blossom, however, and his leadership is growing stronger without any incidents off the field.

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1. Teddy Bridgewater

teddy bridgewater
Chuck Cook - USA TODAY Sports

As anti-diva as they come, Teddy Bridgewater has become the poster-child for those pundits tired of the antics of Johnny Manziel. He has quietly become one of the elite quarterback prospects in college football and quite possibly worked his way into being a Heisman Trophy frontrunner and the No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. After leading his team to an upset in the Sugar Bowl, Bridgewater has responded to the wave of popularity by shutting down his Twitter account and redoubling his dedication to his team and his craft. When was the last time Johnny Football thought about shutting down his Twitter?

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