Manziel adds more hard­ware, wins AP Player of the Year.

He be­comes the first fresh­man to earn writ­ers’ honor.

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS - By Kristie Rieken

Johnny Manziel ran for al­most 1,700 yards and 30 touch­downs as a du­althreat quar­ter­back his se­nior year of high school at Ker­rville Tivy.

Who would have thought he’d be even more im­pres­sive at Texas A&M when pit­ted against the de­fenses of the South­east­ern Con­fer­ence?

On Tues­day, Manziel picked up an­other ma­jor award for his spec­tac­u­lar de­but sea­son. He was voted The As­so­ci­ated Press Player of the Year. As with the Heis­man Tro­phy and Davey O’Brien Award that Manziel al­ready won, the QB nick­named Johnny Foot­ball is the first fresh­man to col­lect the AP award.

Manziel’s 31 votes were more than twice that of sec­ond place fin­isher Manti Te’o, Notre Dame’s start line­backer. He is the third straight Heis­man-win­ning quar­ter­back to re­ceive the honor, fol­low­ing Robert Grif­fin III and Cam New­ton.

Manziel erased ini­tial doubts about his abil­ity when he ran for 60 yards and a score in his first game against Florida.

“I knew I could run the ball, I did it a lot in high school,” Manziel said in an in­ter­view with the AP. “It is just some­thing that you don’t get a chance to see in the spring. Quar­ter­backs aren’t live in the spring. You don’t get to tackle. You don’t get to evade some of the sacks that you would in nor­mal game sit­u­a­tions. So I feel like when I was able to avoid get­ting tack­led, it opened some peo­ple’s eyes a lit­tle bit more.”

The 6-foot-1 Manziel threw for 3,419 yards and 24 touch­downs and ran for 1,181 yards and 19 more scores to help the Ag­gies win 10 games for the first time since 1998 — and in their in­au­gu­ral SEC year, too.

Ryan Tan­nehill, Manziel’s pre­de­ces­sor now with the Dol­phins af­ter be­ing drafted eighth over­all this sea­son, saw prom­ise from the young quar­ter­back last year when he was red­shirted. But even he is sur­prised at how quickly things came to­gether for Manziel.

“It’s pretty wild. I al­ways thought he had that play­mak­ing abil­ity, that some­thing spe­cial where if some­body came free, he can make some­thing ex­cit­ing hap­pen,” Tan­nehill said. “I wasn’t really sure if — I don’t think any­one was sure if — he was go­ing to be able to carry that through­out an SEC sea­son, and he’s shocked the world and he did it.”

The 4,600 yards of to­tal of­fense Manziel gained in 12 games broke the SEC record for to­tal yards in a sea­son.

The record was pre­vi­ously held by 2010 Heis­man win­ner New­ton, who needed 14 games to pile up 4,327 yards.

Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel threw for 3,419 yards and 24 touch­downs and ran for 1,181 yards and 19 TDs in his red­shirt fresh­man sea­son.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.