Why Is Johnny Manziel Popular?

Published on 15-May-2014 by Stacey Mickles
Football - NFL / NFL Daily Review

Beating Bama was the key to his rise.

ESPN's Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic -- better known as Mike and Mike -- asked a simple and interesting question recently.

Why is Johnny Manziel popular?

Now, I have my own theories, which I'll address shortly, but there's been a bit of a controversy this week because a Texas A&M regent wants to rename the Aggies' stadium The House that Johnny Built.

Naturally, that didn't exactly go over well with a large number of former players, who said they felt slighted by that suggestion. And who could blame them?

One such person was former linebacker Sean Porter, who expressed his dislike on Twitter.

Sean Porter tweets

It's interesting to note that his commenting on it once was immediately doubled, but that's a matter for his math profs to address.

Texas A&M was a well-established program before Johnny Manziel came along, so don't get it twisted. But, with that being said, the program didn't break free from big brother Texas until Manziel arrived.

Johnny Football raised the program's profile, and now the Aggies are bigger than they've ever been; some would argue they're even bigger than Texas right now.

Manziel's exciting style of play has attracted a legion of fans because he seems so anti-establishment.

How is a rich kid from Texas anti-establishment? Well, it gives him a base to enable him to do what he wants and not give a flip about what we think.

Most of us would love to do that in our real life. That's why his jersey right now is a best seller. 

He's the modern-day Joe Namath without the fur coats. He thumbs his nose at authority and people love him for it, although he never won a BCS Title or even took his team to a BCS game, which is why I think he shouldn't have a field named after him.

The biggest things Manziel accomplished in college were beating Alabama and winning a Heisman. Not to sound too cheeky, but that's it, and those were in his freshman year.

He also cost his team several victories last season when a game was on the line, so to name a field after him when there are more established alums who came before him like John David Crow and Gene Stallings and head coaches like Bear Bryant is just wrong. Disrespectful, even. You'd think that regent would have a longer memory.

So Texas A&M, tap the brakes before you do something really stupid that may tarnish your football legacy.

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