The entire Universe is probably aware by now that Johnny Manziel spoke for the first time in front of the cameras today at the A&M weekly football press conference. The reporters were no doubt bouncing in their seats with anticipatory giddiness, but their questions were a bit more well-constructed than the initial teleconference yesterday.
Audio is available here:
Here are a few thoughts I managed to develop while attempting to work during the conference:
He's a normal guy. Most of us had already assumed this, but there was still the aura of the unknown. He doesn't have a voice like Mickey Mouse or Sam Elliott, he seems at ease in front of the cameras, and he's humble and self-deprecating. He made fun of his kicking skills and repeatedly heaped praise on all of his teammates and coaches. He seemed pretty well-prepared for the onslaught of questions that the media had kept pent up over the past three months.
Arrest. He easily handled the questions about his arrest over the summer that you knew would crop up. He owned up to his actions and assured us that there were indeed consequences with Coach Sumlin. He called it a "critical mistake" and did not go into any kind of detail. If people want to know more, they'll look it up.
Recruitment. Andy Staples asked him who else recruited him as a QB. Stanford and TCU were also in the mix with Oregon and A&M. His first offer came from Rice.
- Said his friends and family help keep him grounded.
- He does not Google himself and has not seen any of the songs on YouTube dedicated to him (which is probably good).
- Has not really thought about the Heisman much because he was focused on the season.
- Gets along really well with Coach Kingsbury.
- Loves hanging out with Jameill Showers.
- Amused at students wearing Scooby Doo costumes to the games.
- Predicts "a rather large crowd" if A&M plays Texas in the Cotton Bowl.
Feel free to share any thoughts in the comments below.