We’re stepping away from the news involving the Miami Hurricanes — at least for a minute or two — as word has begun to trickle out on a player you may have heard of on occasion and his availability for this Saturday’s game.
In the upset loss to Auburn this past Saturday, Johnny Manziel suffered a shoulder injury at the end of a scramble early in the fourth quarter. Manziel was replaced for the remainder of that first series in the quarter and missed A&M’s next possession before returning with just over nine minutes left. Despite the fact that he completed 9-of-10 passes upon his return, there was some concern exiting the game that the reigning Heisman winner might be unavailable for this Saturday’s game against Vanderbilt.
Those fears were exacerbated when some of Manziel’s teammates confirmed the quarterback’s arm was in a sling for Monday’s practice. That, however, appeared to be precautionary in nature.
CBSSports.com‘s Bruce Feldman reported via Twitter Tuesday afternoon that, per a source, he’s been told “Johnny Manziel will be fine to play Sat(urday) and is out of [the] sling today.” Head coach Mike Sumlin seemed to buttress that report shortly thereafter, telling reporters he’s “hopeful” Manziel will play against Vandy.
That said, Sumlin said his evaluation of Manziel during the practice sessions through Friday will determine his availability Saturday. Sumlin was non-committal when asked if Manziel would play if he didn’t practice at all this week.
Matt Joeckel, who briefly replaced Manziel against Auburn, would get the start if Manziel is unable to go, Sumlin said.