A&M athletic director has sit-down with Manziel’s parents

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For better or worse, Johnny Manziel has been making headlines since the summer.  From a July arrest to winning the Texas A&M starting quarterback job to leading the Aggies to an 11-win season to its first year in the SEC to becoming the first freshman to win the Heisman, Manziel has been one of the stories of the 2012 season.

The attention hasn’t slowed since the season ended, either, as many have rushed to criticize Manziel for what they believe to be off-field missteps, including  photos of the 20-year-old at a casino holding a bottle of Dom Perignon and another that sees him fanning out a wad of cash.  Even a college coach has gotten in on the act, with Oklahoma defensive coordinator Mike Stoops telling a radio station late last week that Manziel “might have three or four Heismans … if they can keep him out of jail or keep him eligible.”

It’s certainly been a whirlwind for Manziel and his family, with the scrutiny on an individual who was a relative unknown outside of College Station entering the 2012 season seemingly increasing on a daily basis.  Manziel himself acknowledged recently the microscope under which he’s been living, saying that “I’ve got to learn from (things) and move on, and make sure I don’t make some of the same mistakes.”

In that vein, A&M athletic director Eric Hyman, the San Antonio Express-News reports, has sat down with the parents of Manziel to discuss their son’s new-found fame and the best way moving forward to deal with it.

“I told them he’s no longer a freshman, and he’s no longer a sophomore, junior or senior,” Hyman told the paper. “He is a ‘Heisman. …

“It’s (about) education, and we’ve got to help the family and Johnny with the transition into being a Heisman award winner. There are things you have to learn, and we have to help him with that.”

Hyman added that winning a Heisman and all the attention that comes with it is “a tremendous responsibility — but it is a responsibility.”

Right or wrong, in this day and age of instant news via social media outlets, celebrities — even college-age athletes — face more scrutiny than ever before.  And, unless SEC coaches can find devise some plan this offseason to defend the dual-threat quarterback, that scrutiny’s not going away for the foreseeable future.

Ex-WVU receiver Reggie Roberson announces transfer to SMU

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Former West Virginia wide receiver Reggie Roberson seems to have found his new place to call home. Roberson announced his commitment to SMU with a doctored image on Twitter on Saturday afternoon.

By rule, Roberson will have to sit out the 2018 college football season since he is transferring to another FBS program. He’ll be eligible to play again for SMU beginning in 2019, but he will do so with three years of eligibility remaining.

Roberson was a three-star prospect in West Virginia’s Class of 2017 and he played in 10 games as a true freshman for the Mountaineers last fall. In those 10 games, Roberson caught six passes for 30 yards. Roberson is a native of Texas, so moving to SMU will bring him a little closer to home than Morgantown, West Virginia can offer.

Syracuse recruiting director leaves to become scout for Buffalo Bills

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Syracuse recruiting director Asil Mulbah is heading to the NFL. With an announcement on Instagram, Mulbah announced he is joining the scouting department with the NFL’s Buffalo Bills.

“Excited to announce that I have accepted a position in the Buffalo Bills Scouting Department,” Mulbah said in his statement. “I’d like to thank Coach Babers, the SU football staff, and the players for an amazing two seasons filled with memories I will cherish for the rest of my life.”

Mulbah has previous NFL scouting experience with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He has been a part of the Syracuse program since 2016. Prior to his arrival at Syracuse under head coach Dino Babers, Mulbah made stops at Wake Forest and Bowling Green.

Nebraska’s starting center opts to retire from playing football

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Nebraska has a handful of centers vying for the starting job in the middle of the offensive line this season. However, one of those options will not be Michael Decker. On Saturday morning, via Twitter, Decker announced he is retiring from playing football. Decker was a starting center for the Huskers last season.

“Over the past [six] months, I have taken a step back and looked at my future career goals and decided that I can no longer [accomodate] football’s commitments,” Decker said in his statement. “It is finally time to see that these aspirations outweighed the lacking desire to continue playing the game. Which, given the team’s goals, would only hurt them by my participation.”

Decker started five games for Nebraska at the center position in 2017 as a sophomore. A knee injury in October brought his season to a premature end. That injury also sidelined Decker for Nebraska spring football this season, leaving his future with the program and the game in doubt.

Nebraska is now moving forward with 14 offensive linemen on scholarship. Hunter Miller seemed to get the most opportunities in the spring to work with the first-team offense, but Nebraska also expects to have Cole Conrad back for the fall. Conrad started seven games for Nebraska last fall.

Japanese college football coach resigns over controversial hit

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Masato Uchida, the head coach of Nihon University’s national championship football team in Japan, has resigned as head coach of the program in response to a devastating hit delivered by one of his players on an opposing quarterback in a recent game against rival Kwansei Gakuin.

A Nihon defender well behind a pass play sped toward a quarterback well after an attempted pass. With the quarterback leisurely jogging toward the sideline, the Nihon defender tackled the unsuspecting quarterback from behind at the legs. You can watch the video of the hit, which went viral in Japan, on YouTube. The quarterback was forced to leave the game and it has been reported recovery from ligament damage in his spine could take three weeks. Fortunately, no nerve damage was discovered.

“The responsibility for this series of problems lies directly with me. I will resign as head coach,” Uchida said on Saturday, according to the Associated Press. “I am quitting for the sake of the young players. We must create a new Nichidai. After the incident, I did not warn my players and that is my responsibility. It was my poor judgment.”

Officials from Kwansei Gakuin accused Nihon of intentionally trying to hurt the quarterback, but Uchida initially refuted such allegations. In light of the controversial hit, three games for Nihon have been canceled due to upcoming opponents opting not to play against them. The Kantoh Collegiate Football Association announced additional cancellations as well.