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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

“Money Manziel”

Photo by Courtesy of Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

Former Texas A&M football quarterback Johnny Manziel gives the nickname “Money Manziel” a whole new meaning with his recent admittance to profiting off of signed memorabilia during his 2013 season. 

During the 2013 Texas A&M football season, then-sophomore quarterback Johnny Manziel was fresh off winning the 2012 Heisman Trophy.
As a result, home games in Kyle Field had an electric energy about them. Chants such as “Johnny Football” and “Money Manziel” were plentiful. Manziel has recently admitted the latter nickname could be taken quite literally.
In a YouTube video released on Wednesday, June 2, Manziel said he was once paid $3,000 in Miami for signing various pieces of memorabilia after winning the Heisman.
“This guy comes up behind me and was like, ‘Yo, how would you want to make three grand?’ I turn around, I’m like, ‘F— yeah, bro.’ I got like 65 bucks in my bank account. I’m waiting on that beginning of the month January stipend check,” Manziel told Barstool Sports. “So I take this guy’s number down, we’re doing it all sneaky, we don’t want to get caught. We’re trying to learn from everybody else who got caught.”
Per NCAA rules, a student athlete may not receive payment for his or her complimentary admissions and may not exchange them for any item of value. If found guilty, these actions would jeopardize the student athlete’s eligibility, though a currently pending NCAA rule could allow student athletes to profit off of their personal brands.
The Kerrville native then said he made another $30,000 in a separate transaction, also in Miami for the 2013 BCS National Championship game.
“So this guy is like, ‘All right, go to this room at the Fontainebleau. All this stuff will be in there, laid out, and when you’re done, just send me a picture of all of it, I’ll give you the code to the safe, the money will be in there,'” Manziel said.
In 2013, the NCAA launched an investigation into claims of Manziel making monetary gains signing memorabilia while in Miami.
However, they found no evidence Manziel had accepted any funds, and the investigation concluded with “Money Manziel” being suspended for the first half of the 2013 season opener against Rice University.
The investigation did have further consequences. The most notable of them would be ramifications on Manziel’s reputation, especially after two journalists broke the story.
Darren Rovell, writer for The Action Network, was one of two reporters on an ESPN story from 2013 that detailed the alleged signings and the then-ongoing NCAA investigation.
Texas A&M Chancellor John Sharp denied the accusations in the article and wrote a letter to his constituents in an attempt to discredit Rovell and show support for Manziel.
In a tweet from Friday, June 4, Rovell said Sharp owes him an apology.
“After Johnny Manziel’s autographs for cash admission, it’s time for Texas A&M Chancellor John Sharp to apologize for defaming me and attacking my credibility in front of Aggies fans for the sport of it,” Rovell said in the tweet. “It has been eight years coming.”
These are the only two deals Manziel himself has admitted to partaking in, putting the quarterback’s profits at a minimum of $33,000.
Manziel claims he did not accept any money prior to winning the Heisman Trophy. If true, the only games and victories that could potentially be stripped from his record would be from the 2013 season.
It was in this season that the Aggies went 9-4 with a 52-48 victory over Duke University in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.
Manziel said he is happy with the living he made for himself in college and dared the NCAA to take action against him.
“I got to make somewhat of a decent living in college,” Manziel said. “Take my f—-ing 9-4 season away and my Chick-fil-A Bowl against Duke.”

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