Thursday, August 29, 2013

Is Johnny Football Too Big To Fail?

I usually try to refrain from blogging about the same subject over and over again, but the topic of Johnny Football is so volatile, polarizing, and controversial I had to address it one more time.

After being accused of signing thousands of autographs for money and questioned by the NCAA for over 6 hours Johnny Manziel has been suspended for the first half of the Aggies game vs. Rice on Saturday.  For dramatic effect I'll repeat that unbelievable statement, JOHNNY MANZIEL HAS BEEN SUSPENDED FOR EXACTLY ONE HALF OF ONE GAME FOR ALLEGEDLY SIGNING HIS NAME THOUSANDS OF TIMES FOR MONEY.  Does anyone have a problem with this statement?

If you do it's because you're expecting consistency and fairness from the NCAA as it relates to punishing athletes who receive improper benefits.  Somewhere Dez Bryant, A.J. Green, and Terrelle Pryor are wondering what the hell is going on.  They were raked over the coals and crucified for infractions far less severe than the Manziel accusations and their reputations were permanently damaged.  Why does Johnny get a free pass?

If you don't have a problem with a first half suspension it's probably because you don't care what Johnny Football does off the field, so long as he performs at a high level on the field.  Wins and losses are all that matters and you are curious to see if Manziel can duplicate the season he had last year.

Without question Johnny Football is receiving preferential treatment.  Is it racially motivated?  Is it financially motivated?  Are NCAA investigators in this day and age really unable to come up with any evidence of wrong doing?

Whatever the case may be it sets a dangerous precedence going forward.  You can't arbitrarily decide who to punish for NCAA violations.  The rules should apply to everyone equally.  Johnny Football doesn't deserve to play this season, but I'm glad he is.  I'm more curious to see if Texas A&M can beat Alabama and LSU than if he profited from signing his name over 4,000 times.  Hypocritical of me to say that isn't it? 

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