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A&M, NCAA confirm Manziel’s half-game suspension

Johnny Manziel, Luke Joeckel AP

And there you have it.  The Johnny Manziel situation has finally come to an end.  Probably.

Following up on earlier reports, Texas A&M and the NCAA released a joint statement in which it was “confirmed… that there is no evidence that quarterback Johnny Manziel received money in exchange for autographs, based on currently available information and statements by Manziel.”  The reigning Heisman winner was interviewed for six-plus hours Sunday by NCAA investigators regarding allegations that he had received impermissible benefits.

However, because of what was described in the release as “an inadvertent violation” of NCAA bylaw 12.5.2.2 — i.e Manziel not taking the proper steps to ensure someone doesn’t profit off of hisn name and/or likeness — A&M declared Manziel ineligible and set the conditions for his reinstatement, which are as follows and which have been accepted by the NCAA:

  • A one-half game suspension for Manziel
  • Manziel will address the team regarding the situation and lessons learned
  • Texas A&M will revise its future education concerning student-athlete autographs for individuals with multiple items

In the release, the NCAA did note that “[i]f additional information comes to light, the NCAA will review and consider if further action is appropriate.”

“I am proud of the way both Coach [Kevin] Sumlin and Johnny handled this situation, with integrity and honesty,” A&M chancellor John Sharp said in a statement. “We all take the Aggie Code of Honor very seriously and there is no evidence that either the university or Johnny violated that code.”

With the punitive measure, Manziel will be forced to sit out the first two quarters of the season opener Saturday vs. Rice in College Station.  Sumlin has stated neither who will start in place of Manziel or whether the All-American would play in the second half.

Regardless, the news seemingly brings to a conclusion a drama that began less than four weeks ago.  Normally not known for its expediency — Miami says hello, NCAA — The Association, for whatever reason, closed the book on this situation in a remarkably efficient manner.  And, for a football program with high hopes for the 2013 season, the swiftness was appreciated.

“Texas A&M University would like to thank the NCAA staff, not only for its fairness and professionalism throughout this process, but also for the expediency of its actions,” A&M athletic director Eric Hyman wrote. “Texas A&M is a proud member of the NCAA and the Southeastern Conference and, as such, we will continue to abide by the rules governing the association and the conference.  Texas A&M is committed to competing with integrity and sportsmanship, and we will continue to ensure strict compliance guidelines for our student-athletes, coaches and supporters.”

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45 Responses to “A&M, NCAA confirm Manziel’s half-game suspension”
  1. brianincbus says: Aug 28, 2013 5:45 PM

    I see the NCAA is continuing their hands off policy of the cash cow known as the SEC. If this had happened at a Big 10 or Pac 10 school, not only would the player have lost a year’s worth of eligibility, but the school would have received a bowl ban.

  2. alligatorsnapper says: Aug 28, 2013 5:52 PM

    I lost this bet. The only thing I can think of for the 1/2 game suspension that is agreed to by TAMU and the NCAA is that they know the rules are absurd that college players do not own their name and their likeness and after all that is what the lawsuit they are facing at this time (O’Bannion) is all about.

    Maybe the NCAA realizes it is likely they will lose the lawsuit and they don’t want to pay any more than they have to by making things worse in this matter?

  3. mgmac says: Aug 28, 2013 5:55 PM

    Word is he will be outside the stadium, signing autographs for the first half of the game.

  4. YouMadCauseImStylingOnYou says: Aug 28, 2013 5:55 PM

    So John Sharp a week ago proclaimed Manziel’s innocence, Manziel gets suspended anyhow and Sharp still says Manziel didn’t do anything wrong.

    This is the chancellor of a major American university. Think about that for a second.

  5. ancientcougar says: Aug 28, 2013 6:03 PM

    I can’t believe what happened at Ohio State with these poor players getting slammed for trading for tats and this rich kid getting slapped on the hands for reportedly signing hundreds of autographs for “wink,wink”, absolutely no self gain.

  6. asimonetti88 says: Aug 28, 2013 6:09 PM

    The NCAA really took a stand here. The innocent amateur status of student-athletes everywhere has been upheld.

  7. YouMadCauseImStylingOnYou says: Aug 28, 2013 6:15 PM

    “Manziel will address the team regarding the situation and lessons learned”

    1. No cameras allowed
    2. Your best buddy is your bag man
    3. Cash ONLY
    4. Make sure your dad can pay off the brokers when they go to the press
    5. Play in the SEC
    6. PROFIT

  8. normtide says: Aug 28, 2013 6:30 PM

    styles- Have to say I agree with you. The uni president should either be contrite or just silent.

    I think every one knows he took money. The difference here is there is no proof. No one has even publicly said they paid him. Its one of this things that don’t really sit right with me. But there isn’t proof.

    For people who think there shouldn’t be a rule against it, you do realize it would totally change recruiting. It would be great for the few money making athletic depts. They could promise 10,000 “autograph
    opportunities”.

  9. woebegong says: Aug 28, 2013 6:32 PM

    brianincbus says: Aug 28, 2013 5:45 PM

    Two years ago the University of Georgia had an all American WR named A.J. Greene suspended for 4 games for selling his Jersey for 1 grand. You need to get over your jealousy of the SEC.
    This is a typical example of the NCAA not killing the cash cow that is associated with s Heisman Trophy winner, not just because Texas A&M is now in the SEC.

  10. normtide says: Aug 28, 2013 6:35 PM

    Yep, styles lost me again with his send post.

    Does anyone think the pay for autographs is going away now? It will become the blueprint.

  11. overratedgators says: Aug 28, 2013 6:45 PM

    I really thought Johnny Football was going down for this. But you can only punish what you can prove, and when it was all said and done, just not enough evidence. Still can’t shake the feeling though, that Johnny just got made a lot of money, and got very, very lucky that it didn’t come back to bite him.

  12. mgavin78 says: Aug 28, 2013 6:46 PM

    NCAA ends this in about two weeks. But the UM case takes 4 years

  13. YouMadCauseImStylingOnYou says: Aug 28, 2013 6:47 PM

    @woebegong

    Green should have completely lost his amateur eligibility in 2009 like 13 members of the UNC roster did since he was working with and taking improper benefits from agents, but the NCAA gave him a cute 4 game suspension for selling his jersey hoping everyone would forget about it anyhow.

    Also funny how you left out Cam Newton in 2010, what was he suspended for? 1 full day?

    Funny how Dez Bryant (a Heisman candidate himself in 2009) loses his amateur status for eating lunch with Deion Sanders though, what conference was he in?

  14. kingfish2013 says: Aug 28, 2013 6:56 PM

    Utterly disgusted.. one player after another is suspended a whole season for visiting the wrong people, getting a tattoo etc etc, and this soon to be train wreck gets a half a game suspension! Double standards to the utmost NCAA. Your righteousness from here on on anything falls on deaf ears.Disgusting.

  15. woebegong says: Aug 28, 2013 6:58 PM

    I am assuming that you have proof of this allegation? It was fully investigated by both the NCAA and UGA and no proof was found to the rumor. If there is one thing that can always be said about UGA, is they are more honest and have stricter punishment policies that more than 95% of the other universities in the NCAA. When they suspended Greene, the NCAA had not even ruled on it yet. The old saying goes, “Where there is smoke, there is fire”, but if the fire never is found, it is kind of hard for grown people to believe in rumors. Manziel may indeed have done the deed, but if there is no firm proof of him getting the cash, it remains a rumor right now. Gossip, until it is proven by fact.

  16. jessejames182 says: Aug 28, 2013 7:01 PM

    Why is no one saying “Hey maybe this means ESPN is a bunch of butt holes because they reported there was over 4,400 signed items and tens of thousands of dollars made with no sources and the NCAA found nothing.”

  17. thefiesty1 says: Aug 28, 2013 7:01 PM

    I hope Rice is up at least 21 points by halftime. Then Johnny Football can come in and rescue tamu and be the hero for saving their season.

  18. atxcane says: Aug 28, 2013 7:02 PM

    “Gossip, until it is proven by fact.*”

    *If the team/player is a member of an SEC institution. For all other conferences, the NCAA retains the rights to consider all allegations fact, including statements known to be factually incorrect.

    FIFY.

  19. raysfan1 says: Aug 28, 2013 7:04 PM

    Des Bryant was not suspended for visiting Deion Sanders; that isn’t in itself a violation of NCAA rules. He was suspended for lying about it to the investigators. It was also a gross overreaction.

  20. Slim Charles says: Aug 28, 2013 7:05 PM

    TAMU took it down already, but for a short time you could buy the photo they used announcing the suspension: http://twitter.com/TomPelissero/status/372833888214601728

  21. kingfish2013 says: Aug 28, 2013 7:06 PM

    I totally agree with you Brian incbus.

  22. kingfish2013 says: Aug 28, 2013 7:10 PM

    Proof? So the kid signed hundreds of memorabilia numerous times for no restitution cause hey, he’s just that kinda guy

  23. woebegong says: Aug 28, 2013 7:12 PM

    Gotta show the bucks trail. If indeed he did sign, as you say, hundreds of autographs for bucks, it should be fairly easy to find someone to come forward.

  24. lovinthatsomanyhateonnd says: Aug 28, 2013 7:13 PM

    the greatest trick Manziel ever pulled was convincing the world he didnt sign a thing.

    cheat on SEC, cheat on

  25. amosalanzostagg says: Aug 28, 2013 7:15 PM

    Exclusive,in depth TV coverage of the NCAA meeting with Texas A&M officials. I wonder if ESPN will buy the video?

  26. atxcane says: Aug 28, 2013 7:19 PM

    @kingfish

    Yes. That is exactly the BS the NCAA is selling on this one lol. They fully acknowledge he was signing memorabilia for an autograph broker, but the narrative is that “he didn’t know it was for a broker, and there is no proof that he took any money.”

    So Manziel/NCAA would have you believe that he went and signed >4000 pieces of memorabilia for a guy he thought was just an avid fan. For free. In his hotel room. After saying (on video) “I’ll just say I was approached by a lot of autograph seekers.”

    I’m dying laughing here.

  27. amosalanzostagg says: Aug 28, 2013 7:20 PM

    “It’s not the crime, it’s what you can prove in a court of law” Jamie Foxx to Gerald Butler in Law Abiding Citizen.

  28. amosalanzostagg says: Aug 28, 2013 8:08 PM

    brianincbus says: Aug 28, 2013 5:45 PM

    I see the NCAA is continuing their hands off policy of the cash cow known as the SEC. If this had happened at a Big 10 or Pac 10 school, not only would the player have lost a year’s worth of eligibility, but the school would have received a bowl ban.

    No, it shows that absent any incriminating evidence.
    a person is considered innocent until PROVEN guilty.

    Does this mean Manziel is innocent? Nope. He just may be smarter than people think.

  29. dietrich43 says: Aug 28, 2013 8:12 PM

    “He said his sick kid was a big fan. I thought it was odd he asked for 4,400 items, but I am just a dumb college student, how should I know?”

  30. theuglitruth says: Aug 28, 2013 8:22 PM

    NCAA IS A JOKE!

  31. anc713 says: Aug 28, 2013 8:46 PM

    brianincbus says:
    “I see the NCAA is continuing their hands off policy of the cash cow known as the SEC. If this had happened at a Big 10 or Pac 10 school, not only would the player have lost a year’s worth of eligibility, but the school would have received a bowl ban.”

    I guess Oregon got hammered on their probation with the loss of 3 scholarships over 3 years in your eyes.

  32. artisan3m says: Aug 28, 2013 8:47 PM

    If Manziel didn’t have a target on his back before, he does now. If there was no evidence that he profited from his signatures, why suspend him over an “inadvertent” violation of 12.5.2.2? That seems a bit lame.

  33. amosalanzostagg says: Aug 28, 2013 8:50 PM

    YouMadCauseImStylingOnYou wrote on: Aug 28, 2013 5:55 PM

    So John Sharp a week ago proclaimed Manziel’s innocence, Manziel gets suspended anyhow and Sharp still says Manziel didn’t do anything wrong.

    This is the chancellor of a major American university. Think about that for a second.
    ________________________

    Okay I thought about it.

    A sitting chancellor of a major University system is confronted with a situation in which no University official was involved, had no first hand knowledge of what exactly happened, and did not discuss with other Sr University Administrators over a protracted period of time with meetings or e-mails and the Chancellor proclaims “innocence” and is racked for his belief?

    I guess Penn State with Spanier, Curley and Schultz should not be tried for the Sandusky situation or Tressel shouldn’t have been fired for the cover up
    at Ohio State.

    The premise under American law is that you are innocent until PROVEN guilty. There was no proof that Manziel was paid for the documented 1,600
    + autographs that are known to be online. All we have is the word of six brokers who can never admit that they paid Manziel without offering documented proof of a payment. Take the broker who said he paid Manziel
    $75,000. Where was the reported filing with the State of Connecticut on the
    “performance” tax on the event? You Have to report the tax on the date of performance and provide written documentation to the reporting State Tax
    entity.

    The IRS is going to be interested come next February 1, 2014 when the broker will probably get a letter of inquiry asking for the necessary documentation relating to a $75,000 payment to Manziel or his designate they want to see the 1099C filing on the payment. Either the broker produces it or has to admit it was a lie.

    Manziel is home free. He or his designate files the 1099c as income and pays taxes on it. Manziel can’t be sanctioned by the NCAA because he has been
    “punished” already. A&M can’t be made to forfeit any games won because they were never a party to the brokers paying Manziel. The brokers can’t sue because they have all those autographs that they paid for but never reported
    any payments to the IRS or to the State of Connecticut.

    This is how shoddy the OTL reporting was. All ESPN had to do was ask the
    State of Connecticut Tax office under a Freedom of Information filing on
    all event filings for the days in question on the broker. That was never done
    because you don’t think that ESPN would have loved to prove Johnny Manziel took the money?

    Yellow Journalism at it’s worse.

  34. floridacock says: Aug 28, 2013 9:03 PM

    Manziel is one of two things. Either he lied and he or someone tied to him was paid or he is too stupid to actually make the grade to stay in school. No other option

  35. amosalanzostagg says: Aug 28, 2013 9:42 PM

    From TexAgs.com

    Johnny Manziel’s speech to the locker room.

  36. gborange says: Aug 28, 2013 9:44 PM

    Hahaha the NCAA finally ran into someone they couldn’t bully around. I’m sick of the rules and regulations. Let the best players play and quit trying to ruin college football like Goodell has the NFL. It’s all we have left!

  37. florida727 says: Aug 28, 2013 9:49 PM

    This could go down in history as one of the most stupid “penalties” ever. So they admit he did NOTHING wrong. They suspend him for a half of the Rice game? Damn. Can’t imagine what the penalty would be if he ACTUALLY was found to have done something wrong.

    Reminds me of Bill Murray in the movie Stripes.

    “Have you ever been convicted of a felony?”
    “Convicted? No. Never CONVICTED.” (emphasis added) :)

  38. apmn says: Aug 28, 2013 9:54 PM

    Hooty-hoo! Let’s go Owls!

  39. Hawk Rising says: Aug 29, 2013 12:42 AM

    Can we please break away from the NCAA now?

  40. txnative61 says: Aug 29, 2013 2:11 AM

    Manziel should have “taken proper steps to ensure no one profited from his name/likeness”. Of course that would be EXCEPT the NCAA. Since star athletes cannot employ agents to assist in such extensive surveillance and the NCAA is the only one allowed to profit, that they should employ the agents to ensure those “proper steps” are taken. Not just Manziel, but all “stars” have my sympathy trying to navigate the web of intricate potential violations with little professional advice.

  41. mikeinthevine says: Aug 29, 2013 8:46 AM

    Yeah boy, they sure showed him. What a joke.

  42. dkhhuey says: Aug 29, 2013 8:54 AM

    Pfft – wow, shocking punishment! I hope Johnny Paycheck can survive it!

    I have a feeling Johnny Arrogant will no doubt be emboldened by this ‘punishment’ and continue down the path of self destruction – I’m guessing we will be hearing about his actions all year long!

  43. tgaustin says: Aug 29, 2013 9:36 AM

    I can see it now…Manziel rushes for his first TD of the year, pulls a sharpie out of his sock, signs the ball and then throws it twenty rows deep! Enjoy your coach while you got him Ag’s, cause “he gone”! Uncle Nate for Prez!

  44. drewsylvania says: Aug 29, 2013 11:09 AM

    NCAA: Nefarious Company of Associated Avarists.

  45. jerseygirl57 says: Aug 29, 2013 11:32 AM

    jessejames182 says:Aug 28, 2013 7:01 PM

    Why is no one saying “Hey maybe this means ESPN is a bunch of butt holes because they reported there was over 4,400 signed items and tens of thousands of dollars made with no sources and the NCAA found nothing.”

    No, they didn’t have sufficient proof, not the same thing at all.

    Hoping this idiot gets sat on his a$$ early and often this season.

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