Tuesday, Texas A&M will hold a press conference previewing its start to the 2013 season. Just don’t expect any type of clarity — or anything at all, actually — when it comes to a certain Aggie football player and his status for the upcoming season.
In a statement released Monday evening, A&M athletic director Eric Hyman said he has instructed anyone connected to the football program — the coaching staff, players, etc. — “to refrain from commenting on or answering questions regarding the status of our starting quarterback, Johnny Manziel.”
As Robert Cessna of AggieSports.com wrote, “Hyman says ‘starting’ quarterback. Why not say quarterback Johnny Manziel.. or just Johnny Manziel?”
Anyway, here’s the statement, in its entirety:
“The focus of our coaches and student-athletes is solely on preparing for Rice this Saturday, and in the best interests of Texas A&M and the 100-plus student-athletes on the team, I have instructed Coach Sumlin, his staff and our student-athletes to refrain from commenting on or answering questions regarding the status of our starting quarterback, Johnny Manziel.”
Saturday, a report surfaced that A&M has “no plans” on sitting the reigning Heisman winner as the NCAA investigates claims that the quarterback received money this offseason in exchange for his signature on memorabilia.
To further buttress that stance, the A&M coaching staff has not pulled the reins in on Manziel during summer camp, giving him his normal reps in lieu of getting another player at the position ready.
Hyman’s statement instructing those below him comes a few days after one of the men above him made a very public show of support for Manziel.