Johnny Football is heading to the NFL. Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel declared for the NFL draft on Wednesday following two spectacular seasons in which he became the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy and helped the Aggies make a splash in their first two years in the Southeastern Conference. "After long discussions with my family, friends, teammates, and coaches, I have decided to make myself available for the 2014 NFL draft," Manziel said in a letter posted online by the university. "The decision was not an easy one, but we all felt this was the right time to make the next step toward a professional career." Some NFL draft analysts have Manziel ranked as high as the third overall pick in mock drafts. In a style befitting his record-setting career, Manziel led the Aggies to a 52-48 come-from-behind win over Duke in the Chick-Fil-A Bowl on New Years Eve in his final college game. Texas A&M trailed 38-17 at halftime before Manziel guided them to the victory by finishing with 382 yards passing with four TD tosses and 73 yards rushing and another score. "In all of my years of coaching, Johnny Manziel is the most exciting football player I have ever seen," A&M coach Kevin Sumlin said. "We appreciate everything he has done for Texas A&M and Aggie football and wish him nothing but the best." Manziel became the first freshman to win the Heisman in 2012 after setting numerous school and SEC records while leading Texas A&M to an 11-2 record and a victory over No. 1 Alabama in its first season in the SEC. His dynamic play created a frenzy and pushed him into a stratosphere of celebrity that few college athletes have reached. That began to cause problems since Manziel, who is from Kerrville, Texas, still had three years of eligibility remaining. He followed his Heisman-winning season with a high-profile off-season of road trips to Las Vegas and the NBA Finals. Manziel met Heat star LeBron James and rapper Drake, and he posted some tweets that made headlines. One that brought the ire of Aggie fans was when he said he "couldnt wait" to get out of College Station. His most embarrassing blunder came during the summer when he departed early from a quarterback camp for high school players run by the Manning family in Louisiana. Manziel said it was a mutual decision after he overslept and missed meetings and activities. Manziels trouble continued when he got back to football. He was suspended for the first half of the Aggies season opener against Rice for what the school said was an "inadvertent" violation of NCAA rules. He was investigated for allegedly accepting money for autographs from memorabilia brokers, a violation of NCAA rules that could have led to a much longer suspension. The Aggies were supposed to contend for a national title in Manziels encore. But another standout season by the dynamic quarterback wasnt enough to overcome a porous defence that was among the worst in the nation. Texas A&M finished 9-4. Manziel shook off his early season drama to lead the SEC with 4,114 yards and 37 touchdowns and he topped the team in rushing with 759 yards and nine more scores. He threw more touchdown passes, had more yards passing, a better completion percentage and averaged more yards an attempt than he did in 2012. Manziel set an SEC record with 5,116 yards of total offence in 2012 also led the SEC in total offence in 2013. Manziel was again a finalist for the Heisman in 2013, but Jameis Winston stole his thunder with a season much like Manziels a year before to take home the award to Florida State. Manziel finished fifth. Hall of Fame quarterback Fran Tarkenton tweeted about Manziel following the announcement. "Would love to see Johnny Manziel in a Vikings uniform. This guy is the real deal. He will be a big time player on Sundays," Tarkenton tweeted. The Vikings have the eighth overall pick in the draft. The Houston Texans, who play about 100 miles from College Station, have the No. 1 pick in the draft and need a quarterback, though most mock drafts have Louisvilles Teddy Bridgewater going No. 1. Houston Rockets forward Chandler Parsons tweeted good luck to Manziel in the draft Wednesday and finished the tweet with: "Texans??" Jordin Tootoo Jersey
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. Playing in his 19th career final, the second-seeded Tsonga was favourite to win the Open 13 for the third time and to secure an 11th career title, but he struggled with Gulbis attacking approach.NEW YORK, N.Y. - Rob Manfred knows hell get pounded now that hes baseball commissioner — his name is printed in blue script on the sweet spot between the seams of every big league ball.Probably good if I get hit hard, he said, smiling and laughing, during an interview with The Associated Press. A little more offence. We dont have to deal with that issue.Manfreds desk on the 31st floor of baseballs Park Avenue offices was tidy on Monday morning, the first business day after he succeeded Bud Selig and started a five-year term as commissioner. Having worked for MLB since 1998 as an executive vice-president and then as chief operating officer, he didnt have to move into a new office.The issues are piled up, perhaps not physically, but the to-do list is lengthy: Oakland and Tampa Bay want new ballparks; negotiations are ongoing with players over pace of play and domestic violence; Baltimore and Washington are fighting in court over broadcast revenue; there is widespread agreement initiatives must be undertaken to develop young fans and players.A pitch clock must be considered and decreased offence scrutinized along with increased defensive shifts.Tighter balls? Shorter fences? A lower mound? Banning defensive shifts?Perhaps they can be talked about in the future.I do think its important for the game to continue to modernize, he said. That modernization has to proceed at a pace that allows us to be very respectful of the traditions of the game and keeps us from making a hasty error, as they say.He opened his regime Sunday by releasing an open letter to fans, promising development in urban areas and increased emphasis on partnering with high school, college and amateur ball.He left his home early on a snowy Monday and took the commuter train from Tarrytown to Grand Central Terminal, as he has most days since he was hired by MLB after 11 years as an outside counsel with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.Born Sept. 28, 1958, Manfred grew up in Rome, New York, and is thought to be the first commissioner to have played Little League Baseball. He started when he was seven and quit when he was 12 or 13 because it conflicted with tennis.It was a painful and not-particularly successful experience, he said. I played some shortstop, some second base.He attended his first big league game on Aug. 10, 1968, sitting in the lower deck between home plate and first base at Yankee Stadium for New Yorks 3-2 loss to Minnesota. Mickey Mantle went deep twice in his last multihomer game.It was a big trip for us as a family, Manfred said.He wears conservative suits and has a gap-toothed smile and a receding hairline, looking every bit the corporate lawyer he was. His Cornell undergraduate and Harvard Law School diplomas are on the wall behind his desk, to the side of his computer. A flat-screen television on another wall broadcasts sports news.The contrast between the 56-year-old Manfred and the 80-year-old Selig is clear. The longtime Brewers owner ruled baseball from Milwaukee with grandfatherly charm. Selig claims to have never sent an email during his 22-plus years in charge.Bud I and are actually very different, Manfred said. Buds not much of a technology guy. I am the original plugged-in technology guy. Bud is an expert at the politics of managing owners. He does it with an art of persuasion. I think I can effectively manage the owners as well, but my style will be more based on information, rational persuasion, argument, than just politics.Labor strife remains the biggest danger. Following five strikes and three lockouts from 1972-95, baseball negotiated three strraight deals without a stoppage and is ensured labour peace through the 2016 season.ddddddddddddA labour disruption would be a real setback for this game, Manfred said. I think that weve taught people to expect that we can solve our problems or issues with the players in a constructive way without disrupting the play of the game on the field, and I think a failure to be able to do that would be a step backwards for us, obviously.The ever-increasing speed of high-tech innovation is the No. 2 issue. Regional sports networks and national broadcasting contracts have helped pushed baseballs revenue to nearly $9 billion last year, a more than fivefold increase under Seligs reign.Obviously, the cable model has served us well, Manfred explained. We hope it lasts a very long time. But its something you have to be concerned about.One change could be a 20-second pitch clock. While Selig ruled it out for the big leagues this year, it will be experimented with at Double-A and Triple-A.Manfred said MLB executive Joe Torre and Atlanta Braves president John Schuerholz both approved after watching an experiment in the Arizona Fall League.Im a fan of the pitch clock, he said. I think the best endorsement of it is that some of the people involved in the game that you would regard to be on the more traditional spectrum were converts.He also wants stricter interpretation of the rule-book strike zone, a process that began with computer evaluation of umpires ball-strike calls starting in 2001.A lack of strike zone uniformity is kind of like dandelions, Manfred said. If you dont pay attention, it comes back.The big league batting average dropped to .251 last year, its lowest level since 1972. Manfred told ESPN in an interview released Sunday that he was open to banning defensive shifts.I said somewhere down the road its something Id be prepared to have a conversation about. Nothing more, he said Monday,Still, MLB forwarded the players union a list of radical ideas, Fox reported Monday, such as tinkering with the ball, mound, fences and strike zone, and extending the DH to the NL. Manfred also says he doesnt see a DH change happening, but the height of the mound could be open to debate. It was cut from 15 inches to 10 after the 1968 season.I dont see that as a revolutionary idea, he said.He does want to push ahead with international play, saying Id like to play on a more sustained basis outside the United States if thats possible. But games in Asia and Europe are difficult because of travel.The Western Hemisphere is probably more realistic in that regard, he said.And baseball is monitoring the U.S. governments opening to Cuba.Its a great source of talent, and whenever you have a talent source, our people are very interested, he said. Obviously the president has announced an important policy change. What that means at the nuts-and-bolts level that we operate, were just not sure yet.On his first day at the office, New York prepared for a blizzard. Not exactly baseball weather.Manfred beamed when discussing his plans. And when talking about the new baseballs with his name on them.He sent the first one that arrived to his father.It really is a very interesting and exciting, tangible evidence that you are in fact the commissioner of baseball, Manfred said.Howard Smith, MLBs senior vice-president of licensing, made him sign Robert D. Manfred Jr. over and over and over with different pencils and pens. More than a million balls will be manufactured this year.I actually can write if I take the time to do it, Manfred said proudly. It turned out OK. Cheap Canadiens Jerseys Cheap Predators Jerseys Cheap Devils Jerseys Cheap Islanders Jerseys Cheap Rangers Jerseys Cheap Senators Jerseys Cheap Flyers Jerseys Cheap Penguins Jerseys Cheap Sharks Jerseys Cheap Blues Jerseys Cheap Lightning Jerseys Cheap Maple Leafs Jerseys Cheap Canucks Jerseys Cheap Golden Knights Jerseys Cheap Capitals Jerseys Cheap Winnipeg Jets Jerseys
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