Will Manziel ever get his life together?

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most recently on the weekend of April 4th-6th, Manziel was accused of causing nearly $20,000 in damage to an LA home by a letter given from the attorney of the homeowner. Niki Ghazian reported to ESPN, “evidence suggests” Manziel and his friends were partying the whole weekend until the police showed up on the 6th because of a noise complaint. It has been reported that the suspended Browns player, Josh Gordon and Manziel have been living together for some time. Gordon’s suspension from his positive drug test along side of Manziel’s known drug and alcohol problems have stewed together to create bad decisions and lawsuits. Drew Rosenhaus, Manziel’s Agent, says that he won’t be representing Johnny much longer if he doesn’t get help and get his life back on track. He claims that when he first started representing Manziel it was a contingent from the start although he continues refusing to go.

Academic theory and sports are not too often together in conversation but can truly add to one another and what we know of both. In Newspaper Coverage of Early Professional Ice Hockey: the discourse of class and control by Daniel S. Mason and Gregory H. Duquette, an article on class theory in Ice Hockey, develops an understanding of how the sport was not something of itself but was a medium for which struggles between higher classes and lower classes were communicated. It was found that the International hockey League (IHL) community focused on the violence of the sport as well as focusing on the skill and pace of the game. The conversation within the IHL coverage used blue-collar language to describe the aspects of the game because they were in mining town filled with a lower class audience. The Canadian papers, being the higher-class audience, focused on the violence of the IHL and on the salaries of the Canadian league players treating them as businessmen. The theoretical findings revealed that although it is the same sport, the framing of each league looked different depending on who the audience is. In conclusion to the theory, largely the sport was a way to translate the thoughts of the audience between classes and a way to communicate larger contextual and historical meaning and implications. This aids in understanding the way that Manziel appears to the public and is understood to those who are attentive to his career and personal life.

Sports historian, Steve Pope claims the study of sport offers a window into a larger, ongoing historical process where men and women, social classes, and racial and ethnic groups struggle over different versions of how to live, how to work and play, and what to value. Manziel’s career (or lack thereof) as a NFL quarterback did not come to a halt because of an injury or a lack of experience and under development of talent but because of the freefalling engine-less plane that is his personal life.

Manziel’s lineage and family history plays into his character and the person he is now; his privilege and entitlement was fostered out of his grandfather’s success. In 1940 Bobby Joe Manziel (Johnny Manziel’s grandfather) struck oil off of a $400 hopeful grasp at drilling for oil and hit a gusher. After this, he claimed to be making   5 million a year on average at drilling for oil. With this great wealth came great trouble. The Manziel name has historically been one who had to fight all odds because of the trouble that has followed Johnny football’s relatives. Bribery, altering of currency, alleged murder, cocaine distribution and various other crimes and city complaints about the Manziels were made dating back to the 1960’s.

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Come present day, Johnny has only affirmed the trouble that has followed his family name because of the accusations about earning money while in college. After his collegiate career as a Heisman trophy winner at Texas A&M, the trouble didn’t stop there while partying and drugs followed him into his short career with the Cleveland Browns. Team director of football operations, Sashi Brown claimed they were tired of Manziel’s actions and that they had already communicated their expectations of him if he is to be a part of the team. Since he was cut from the team on March 11th, he has only gotten into more trouble leading up to his alcohol and drug abuse as well as the damaged caused to the home in LA.

The history of Manziel’s family wealth has only negatively impacted the Heisman trophy winner as a freshman at Texas A&M. His tremendous access to popularity and fame proved to be a nuisance to his blossoming career in college and most likely the NFL in the future. He was given the opportunity to make money by signing memorabilia, although against NCAA rules and could crush any chance he had at an NFL career, and he took it as an anonymous broker shared videos of Manziel in a hotel room signing the merchandise. Despite his potential to achieve a full career as an NFL quarterback his high class and access to popularity and money took him down an easy path to blowing it all away by partying and caring for essentially nothing.

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