A&M coach Kevin Sumlin: Johnny Manziel will speak “at the appropriate time”
When Texas A&M made several players available to speak to the media on Tuesday, there was one big name that was missing: Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel.
Instead of Manziel taking the podium, backup Matt Joeckel spoke during the press conference.
Head coach Kevin Sumlin said that Manziel will speak when the time is right and it would not be beneficial for him to do so this week.
“I think it’s important now based on where he is that his focus is to try to be our quarterback and a student athlete,” Sumlin said, according to the Associated Press. “That’s his biggest challenge right now. (It’s) not his challenge to be here.”
“I don’t think right now that him coming here and saying the words would change some people’s opinion about who he is. At the appropriate time he’ll be able to speak for himself.”
Manziel sat out the first half of Saturday’s 52-31 win over Rice, but when he entered the contest in the third quarter he threw for 94 yards and three touchdowns. After the last score, he was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct, and Sumlin quickly yanked him from the game.
“When he came off the field, I basically made two statements to him, neither one of which should he have responded to,” Sumlin said. “They weren’t questions. They were direct statements and I can’t repeat them right now. What’s amazing to me is the perception that he ignored me. The worst thing that could have happened was for him to reply based on what I told him.”