It seems every year the SEC has gotten more and more popular.
The last couple of years has been the rise of the second most popular SEC player of all time, Johnny Manziel. Now half of it being because he was the first freshman to win the prestigious Heisman award in college football. The other half, well partying at other schools frat parties and the autograph scandal basically sum it all up.
4 years ago was the senior year of the most popular player in SEC football history, Tim Tebow. He was the man of college football. The way he composed himself was unlike any other player of his status. The kid was a two time Heisman winner, one of those being him being the first sophomore to ever win the Heisman trophy and a two time national champion. But on top of both of those things he was a rock star Christian who obviously did not care about what I or anybody else had to say about him or his faith.
In everyone’s eyes he lived his life perfectly on and off the field. Clay Davis wrote in a news report for Fox Sports in 2009,
“Tebow’s a saint. If you’re a man, you wish you were Tebow. If you’re a father, you wish Tebow would impregnate you instead of your husband. Everything that Tebow touches turns to gold. Even his teammates’ mug shorts. Because here’s the deal, 99 percent of all national media and sports fan equate Florida football with Tebow. Period. It doesn’t matter what anyone else does, Tebow is perfection on and off the field. So the program is perfect as well. Sure it’s lazy and harebrained way to judge a team, by projecting Tebow’s moral code onto the rest of the team, but clearly it’s happened. Tebow is a stand-in for the entire Gator team.”
Now Johnny Manziel is the complete opposite person Tim Tebow ever was. He is that punk like kid who does what ever he wants and has no care in the world for how it affects the people around him. Now when you are the Quarterback for a prestigious school like Texas A&M the bar is set a little higher but when you win the Heisman as a freshman, all eyes are on you. Johnny has lived in the spotlight ever sense he beat Alabama last year 29-24 in Tuscaloosa. He like most of the people in this world has taken full advantage of his rockstar like fan base. He does whatever he wants and seems to forget how much of an impact it will have on his team.
But even with all of this said I still believe that this is the media’s fault. It has gotten more vicious sense the “Tebow” days. Now we have social media outlets such as Twitter and Instagram which can put you under a magnifying glass for all 24 hours of the day. At the end of the day Johnny Manziel is a 20 year old college football player who wants to live out his college experience. Which is something that a majority of college students tend to do. Everyone is a different and putting him at the same pedestal that we put Tebow on is not fair to him or anyone. We all live different lives and no matter who you are people are always going to find a way to complain about what you do with your life and how you live it.
Johnny is a young man growing up, yes, he has made a mistake or two but if we were put under the same spotlight that he is put under we would have made mistakes as well. As Miley Cyrus/Hannah Montana’s song “Nobody’s Perfect” says, “Nobody’s Perfect. Ya live and ya learn it! ‘Cause everybody makes mistakes.”