Dez Bryant knows a thing or two about being investigated by the NCAA.
After lying to NCAA investigators about a legal lunch with Deion Sanders, the Cowboys receiver was suspended for the final 10 games of his college career at Oklahoma State.
So, the topic of Johnny Manziel’s ongoing investigation brings up some bitter memories for Bryant.
When asked by ESPN’s Tim MacMahon if he would be upset if Johnny Manziel got a pass, Bryant replied, “Hell yeah, I’ll be mad. I’ll be mad.”
Bryant later clarified, “But I don’t want him to get suspended. I would be mad more at the NCAA for how they do things. I just feel like it’s not fair. This is something I have no problem talking about because I feel like somebody needs to say something to them and let it be known how they treat people is not right.”
Bryant attributes the “love” Manziel is receiving from the media to Manziel’s Heisman win and the Aggies’ rising football program, which Bryant said he did not receive in his case.
“All I did was lie about going over to somebody’s house and I got my season taken away from me,” Bryant said. “Still to this day, I think about it. It bothers me. I can’t get it back. No matter how much money I make in this league … that really meant something to me.”
He continues by agreeing that student athletes should be paid.
“I feel like they should,” Bryant said. “I feel like players in the NCAA should. Those fans are coming out to watch them and support them. When they’re in college, it’s different. You don’t get paid like the NFL get paid. I think what would be OK would be to have just a little bit of money in your pocket. It’s hard in college. You’ve got to get a job (in the off-season) if you can. You’ve got to practice. It’s just hard. Sometimes the training table is just not good enough.
“I don’t want anything to happen to Manziel, I promise. I don’t want anything,” he added. “I just want (the NCAA) to know what (it’s) doing is not right. That’s all they need to know and they need to understand that. Seriously. They really do.”