Johnny Football has gone from darling to divaPublished 3:06pm Tuesday, June 25, 2013
There are very few certainties in life. You know the usual: Death, taxes and to never trust the bidet in a gas station bathroom.
But just as certain as those is the fact that Heisman Trophy winners don’t replicate their award-winning performance the following year.
That is just one of the reasons I am bearish on the 2013 prospects of one Johnny Manziel.
Those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it (just as I almost did in sixth grade).
History tells us that only Ohio State running back Archie Griffin won the coveted Heisman twice.
That fact alone puts the odds against Manziel winning again.
Maybe more so than history, though, is the way Manziel has carried himself since hoisting the hardware.
A late night talk show here, an MLB first pitch there and sprinkling of sketchy tweets and photos with bikini-clad women mixed in. Those are not necessarily the ingredients for a Heisman repeat.
Granted, Manziel is incredibly young – the youngest Heisman winner ever in fact – and he should be given some slack for reveling in his accolades.
If I had just become the first freshman Heisman winner in history, I probably would have perished from elephantitis of the ego two days after the fact.
But Spider-Man’s uncle Ben warned us all that “with great power comes great responsibility,” and Manziel has been acting anything but responsible.
It’s funny, too, that there are other quarterbacks who have had similar (or more) success than ‘Johnny Football,’ yet they have been met with harsher criticism or with shoulder shrugs of apathy.
For instance, I have never been a Cam Newton defender but there is a certain double standard in the way he was treated versus Manziel.
Both players had immense talent and both had legal run-ins during their playing careers.
However, Newton’s transgressions were discussed ad nauseum while Manziel’s aren’t nearly as scrutinized.
By no means do I think it is a matter of race because on the other side of the spectrum, there is Alabama’s A.J. McCarron.
Here’s a two-time national championship winning quarterback who threw 30 touchdowns against only three interceptions last year.
However, McCarron is hardly ever brought up when discussing potential 2013 Heisman winners.
While Manziel harms team chemistry tweeting about his desire to get out of College Station as quickly as possible, the only questionable decisions McCarron makes are related to his ever-growing chest tattoo.
Why is Manziel given leeway wider than Kim Kardashian’s fanny pack when Newton was raked over the coals, and McCarron is but a blip on the Heisman radar?
I certainly don’t have the answer to that question, but I bet the solution will present itself as 2013 takes shape. The little misdeeds of Manziel will manifest themselves in more losses I predict. With more losses comes more scrutiny.
Newton made it through the media firestorm wearing asbestos underwear (made by Under Armour I assume), and McCarron could very well be playing for title number three come January despite his lack of love from the press.
Let’s see how well Manziel holds up in year two of SEC play after a summer of self-made distractions.
Robinson is a sports columnist for The Outlook.