I’ve been wrestling with myself on whether or not I should write this. Do I address the “Johnny Football” media circus or do I just let it go? Wouldn’t me writing about it, just mean I was contributing to the media frenzy surrounding him? I am not an influential sports writer, I am not a professional journalist, I don’t get paid to write, nor do I get requests for my opinions.
I am just a girl who loves football.
And really loves Aggie football.
As I sit here and re-read this, the SEC media days are going on and my twitter feed is blowing up with quotes as Manziel answers the questions being hurled at him.
So – like them or not – here are my thoughts on the media frenzy surrounding Johnny:
Enough already. LEAVE him alone!
Seriously, leave him alone.
I understand the interest in him. He went from the unknown to Heisman winner in just 4 months. He is a phenomenal athlete. His moves on the field surprised and amazed everyone – and you can go back and watch the highlight videos on YouTube and still be amazed.
He is also a 20 year old college kid, who went from the unknown to Heisman winner within 4 months.
He has become a celebrity in a whole new era where social media has changed the landscape of how the public deals with celebrities. One year ago, he could write anything he wanted and not have it broadcast and over-analyzed to death on Sports Center. (Don’t these people have something better to do in their lives than try and read between the lines of a simple sentence on twitter?) AND, then after the fact, when it comes out they WERE DEAD WRONG on the reason behind the tweet, do they come out and offer an apology to him? Nope. Is Johnny mad at A&M? Does he hate Aggieland? Is he jumping at the chance to bail on Aggies everywhere? Nope. All wrong. Good work sports journalists. Good job finding out the full story before you broadcast it all over.
I Guess it’s a good thing his Uncle posted this on Facebook –
“I’m Johnny’s Great Uncle, his Mom, Michelle is my niece. I don’t usually get involved in this kind of stuff, but I like this FB Page and have followed it since its inception so I will venture out there this one time. I’m sharing a picture of Johnny with two young cousins. Johnny loves kids and does a lot of things with and for kids that no one knows about. Johnny in many ways is just a big kid himself. His talent has propelled him into a spotlight that few people his age, if any, would be prepared for. But let me say this about him, Johnny is a GOOD big kid! He loves family and family loves him! He is loyal and is dedicated to his sport, team mates and team”.
What Johnny tweeted about leaving College Station must be seen in context, as is true with anything that anyone says, and I am going to give y’all some context. I know we all want to like Johnny and truthfully there isn’t much about him not to like, but media will do what they do best and that is ride a good horse into the ground.
Here is the short version…Johnny was away on a fishing trip in Port Aransas with some other football buddies. He happened to be talking on the phone with one of his roommates when there came a knock on their front door. The roommate who was about to go to bed, asked Johnny, who is in Port Aransas, if he was expecting anyone to stop by (at 12:30 AM). Yes, 12:30 AM! Johnny replied with a “no” while the roomy went to look out the window and saw that a police car is parked out front. He opened the door to, “we have been getting reports about the car parked in front of the house against traffic flow…and by the way the tint is too dark as well.” (loose interpretation). Did I mention it was 12:30 AM???
Johnny explained that there was nothing he could do until he got home the next day with the keys and asked what the officer was going to do. The officer left a ticket on his car…to which Johnny tweeted the tweet that went around the world, surmising many things to which were a result of something taken completely out of context.
Johnny loves A&M and the football coaches and athletic staff love Johnny. Are the A&M powers upset over this? Their take is that if this is the worst that comes out of the media’s coverage in the off season…no big deal…life is good (loosely interpreted). They know the truth, the family and friends know the truth, and now you know the truth. The haters will just keep feeding and the media will beat that dead horse until there’s nothing left I’m sure.
Johnny Football is real…he is young, but he is real. He thinks he’s learned his lesson this time and so do I…we will see. The lyrics to Darius Rucker’s song is so true…kids Johnny’s age are going to, no actually ” you gotta live and learn, you gotta crash and burn”. He’s a great person let’s cut him some slack in his youth and remember believe half of what you see and none of what you hear…from the media.
God Bless (found on this page: https://www.facebook.com/JohnnyHeisman)
— too bad Sports Center didn’t talk about it this, like they did Johnny’s tweet.
So he met LeBron James. And the guys from Duck Dynasty. And Justin Timberlake. I’d take a picture and share it with my friends on Instagram too. So he enjoyed his Spring Break in Mexico. I did that too when I was 20. So he went to a casino in Oklahoma – where it’s legal over 18 –yep, did that too. In other words – Johnny is not doing anything any other 20 year old college kid hasn’t already done. He won the Heisman! He put a beating on that whatusedtobeknownastheBigXII co-champion team in the Cotton Bowl. Let the kid celebrate!
For those saying the coaches need to get a grip on him – you do realize we have one of the best coaching staffs in college football right now? I am pretty sure they are aware of things and are doing what they feel is necessary. And I don’t think it’s any of our business how they are “handling” him. I am going go ahead and guess that they have other items on their to-do list than holding Johnny’s hand all day long.
Anyone think his parents need to tighten the reigns? Um – how would that go over for you at 20 years old? I’m Pretty sure he is considered an adult and capable of making his own decisions – despite whether or not you agree with them.
For those saying his actions are embarrassing A&M – ARE YOU KIDDING ME? At this time last year, everyone was making fun of A&M for even thinking they could compete with the likes of the SEC. 12 months later we have this: http://yearone.aggieathletics.com/ A&M is talked about more than ever before. Record numbers of kids are applying to the school and more are being accepted than ever before.
Should Johnny stay off Twitter? Probably. Should Johnny become a recluse and stop being a 20 year old college kid? Not at all.
I get that as the Heisman winner and now “face of college football” he has a certain responsibility to live up too. I get that. I really do. But I’ve yet to see him ‘do’ anything that would truly be deemed as disastrous.
Now, I don’t have an all access pass to the program, by any means – and yes, he has made some bad choices that have been in the public eye-but I do have an issue with AGGIES running him down because of their one sided media view and often untrue ideas of him, instead of praising him for the unimaginable good publicity and advancement of the program and the University, that he has brought about.
I understand that in a very large group (like the size of A&M fans) that you can’t please everyone. Someone is going to be mad, disappoint, disheartened, whatever. But I hope that Johnny, the coaching staff and the other members of the football team (remember them?) truly know that the majority of Aggie fans love them, are happy with the direction that the program is headed and CANNOT WAIT for the fall season to start.
Just leave everything on the field, boys. That’s where and when all the haters will be silenced.
Thanks and Gig ‘Em
(In the time it took me to write this post, this video was posted to YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EchayK9a8-M – I think people should listen to Johnny himself, vs. the crazed media frenzy.)
Enjoy this article on Johnny as well. Thanks @AubreyBloom247