Sunday, September 1, 2013

Rice Linebacker Nick Elder Comes to Johnny Manziel's Defense

Johnny Manziel had to wait a half to make his debut for the 2013 college football season, but once he got on the field he wasted little time putting his own stamp on the game. If you listen to the commentators and most of the media you'd think that he acted like a spoiled brat having a temper tantrum on national television.

I'll admit--I wondered what the heck he was doing sometimes, but as details come out it is pretty apparent that Manziel is being unfairly cast as the villain.

The commentators seemed to be all too happy to point out Manziels faults and criticize him at every turn. Heck, they even did so during the Alabama//Virginia Tech game. To a point you can say that its their job (except for the 'Bama/VT crew; no excuse), but when they began talking about his character they crossed a line. They were quick to assume the worst without actually knowing what went on.

Like when Manziel made the autograph signing gesture towards one of the Rice defenders:

On air and online the talk was all about how immature and childish Manziel was. However, the reality of the situation was laid out on twitter by the Rice defender in question:

The two are actually friends and follow each other on Twitter.

People like to debate all the time about what is wrong with college football and how it can be made better. The debates are justified by claiming that with millions of dollars on the line the game needs to be fixed.

A better system for picking a champion needs to be picked (there will never be a good one which in my mind is one of the beautiful things about college football). Compensation for players needs to be addressed. Picking award winners is biased. Schools make to much off the hard work of these kids...the list could go on and on.

The stark reality is simply this--people need to remember that football is a game. They need to remember that it is something many of them once did because they wanted to hang out with friends; because they enjoyed it--not because of money.

Folks in the media and online have forgotten that (or don't care), but thankfully the guys on the field have not.

Nick, Johnny--thanks for showing us that football can still be a fun game played between friends and nothing more. Well done.

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