Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M working to trademark ‘Johnny Football’
Johnny Manziel led Texas A&M to the most stunning win of the college football season, a 29-24 upset win over No. 1-ranked Alabama in Tuscaloosa on Saturday. The Aggies’ quarterback is putting together one of the best seasons ever for a college freshman quarterback. He’s thrown for 18 touchdowns and just six interceptions, and he’s run for 15 more scores. His flashy play and winning ways led to him being nicknamed “Johnny Football,” at the beginning of the season, and now his family reportedly is working with the school to trademark the name.
ESPN’s Darren Rovell reports that Manziel’s family is working with Texas A&M to trademark “Johnny Football” now that the youngster has become so popular. Another organization reportedly filed for the trademark recently, but the trademark would likely be awarded to Johnny because it has to do with his name.
Neither the Manziels nor the school would be able to use the phrase in connection with the quarterback in order to preserve his amateur status. They are expected to try to use the trademark to block anyone else from profiting off the name.
This is just another clear example of how the NCAA rules need to be adjusted. A player like Manziel should be allowed to capitalize on his celebrity status while it’s at its peak without having his eligibility threatened. I think the solution is pretty simple: let him profit off it in some ways, but just put the money in a trust account that he can’t touch until after he graduates or his playing career ends at Texas A&M. What’s wrong with that?