Everyone wants to talk to Johnny Football

Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel is set to have a busy day with five radio interviews on Friday.

Johnny Manziel spent Thursday getting photographed from just about every possible angle.

On Friday, the frontrunner for the Heisman Trophy is scheduled to do five national radio shows.

That's on the heels of Monday and Tuesday press conferences.

Everyone, it seems, wants a piece of Johnny Football.

"This week has been hectic to say the least, working to get all this stuff lined up," Manziel said. "It's certainly fun for me to finally get out and kinda show people a little bit about who I am and get to know me a little bit more, and let people know how much I care about this university and everybody involved."

As Manziel was posing for Sports Illustrated on Thursday afternoon, ESPN was showing a clip from Scott Van Pelt's interview with Manziel earlier in the day. The complete interview is expected to run Saturday on GameDay, said an A&M official. Van Pelt's producer did extra work at A&M on Thursday because Manziel is expected to be named a Heisman Trophy finalist on Monday, along with Kansas State quarterback Collin Klein and Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o, and possibly USC wide receiver Marqise Lee and Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller.

"There's no doubt, in my years here, this is the most attention and requests that I've ever had to deal with," said A&M's Alan Cannon, who has been with the athletic department for 33 years, the last 24 as sports information director. "I think it's a great credit to Johnny, but also to this football team, and Johnny's been good about keeping the focus on the team, and the team success."

Manziel's "Radio Row" on Friday will kick off with ESPN's Mike & Mike in the Morning, followed by the Dan Patrick Show, the Jim Rome Show, the Jack Arute Show on Sirius XM and, finally, Mike Francesa on New York City's WFAN.

Manziel didn't talk to the press during the season because first-year head coach Kevin Sumlin makes freshmen off limits to the media. But he's made up for lost time since the regular season ended Saturday with a 59-29 victory over Missouri.

Manziel talked to the media for the first time Monday in a 55-minute national teleconference that had more than 100 participants. His Tuesday press conference at the Hagner Auditorium attracted 75 to 100 local and regional media, but the majority of the 30 minutes also was shown live on ESPN2.

"We've got to keep in mind he's a student-athlete," said Cannon, as the university has tried to accommodate as many requests as possible within reason during a week that students typically use to concentrate on preparing for finals.

A&M had its own photo shoot with Manziel on Thursday, but it had to be moved twice and condensed.

"And we are working the Tonight Show folks," said Cannon, adding that his department is working daily with David Batson, A&M's director of athletic compliance, to make sure that Manziel isn't endorsing anything and they are abiding by all rules.

A&M plans for Manziel to have a weekend free from media obligations for rest before another hectic week.

The football team will return to the practice field on Tuesday. The 10th-ranked Aggies (10-2) will learn their postseason destination Sunday. A&M is expected to play in the Capital One Bowl in Orlando on Jan. 1 or the Cotton Bowl in Arlington on Jan. 4.

Manziel and junior offensive tackle Luke Joeckel will leave Wednesday for Orlando, Fla., the site of the Home Depot College Football Awards on Thursday on ESPN. Manziel is a finalist for the Maxwell Award, which goes to the nation's best all-around player, and he's also a finalist for the Davey O'Brien National Quarterback Award. Joeckel is a finalist for the Outland Trophy, which goes to the best interior lineman.

If Manziel is a Heisman Trophy finalist, he would fly to New York City on Dec. 7. The Heisman announcement will be Dec. 8.

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(5) comments


I hear Mack has tweeted some snark about "best player on best team" should win the Heisman. I hope that's not true, but would be very shallow of him if it is.

Michael Werlinger

Who would not want to talk to this kid? He's the talk of the whole country.

Raoul Jiura

If Johnny is not the Heisman winner they need to "Expose how everyone voted". I feel better about his chances, but still do not trust the "Bias Media" in love with ND and the "Sob story of Te'o". Te'o is a good person, feel sorry for his loses, but that has nothing to do with who performed the best on the field this year

Raoul Jiura

This is why Sumlin's rule of not having Freshman speak was good. This media hype would of started sooner and who knows how Johnny and the Team would of handled it.


Sports Illustrated? Oh no!

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