Daily Buzz: Quite a star contrast

The ongoing Johnny Manziel saga has shown us what too much hype can do to a college football star. Yet in Columbia, S.C., Steve Spurrier is going out of his way to make sure smothering publicity doesn’t overwhelm his best player, Jadeveon Clowney.

According to The State, the Ol’ Ballcoach decided to close the Gamecocks’ fall practices, after previously agreeing to have them open, in part because he wants to limit the attention his star defensive lineman receives.

“Poor Jadeveon can’t even hardly get out on the field without getting somebody mad at him, so we just have to eliminate open practices, and we have to get some security guys out there, make sure our guys can get in and out of practice without having to sign autographs all the way up and down the field,” Spurrier told the paper.

Spurrier also lashed out about one reporter who “had 15 questions about Jadeveon” during a recent interview session.

“I answered a couple of them, and I said, ‘You know, we have talked about Jadeveon for seven months after that hit,’” Spurrier told The State. “He and Johnny Football, they are the only two guys in America anybody has talked about it seems like — Jadeveon’s hit and Johnny’s adventures all over the country. I think Jadeveon is tired of everybody talking about him. He’s ready for team, and hopefully what our team can achieve this year. We all know he’s a super player, but it’s a team sport.”

It’s interesting that Spurrier mentioned Manziel and Clowney, who are indeed in the same situation this season. Both are outstanding players whose celebrity status has, perhaps, begun to overshadow their talents on the field — if such a thing is possible. Both could easily be swallowed by the circuses that surround them.

But the difference between Manziel and Clowney is that Spurrier and South Carolina are going out of their way to shield Clowney from the hype. Meanwhile, Texas A&M is embracing it, much to Manziel’s detriment. In an article last week, Manziel’s father essentially accused the Aggies of exploiting his son, but you’ll hear no such accusations of Spurrier. That, at least in part, is why you’ll never see the praise of Jadeveon Clowney transform into the intense scrutiny Manziel faces every day.

At this point, it’s probably too late for A&M to stop the Johnny Football locomotive that they helped get rolling, but going forward, the Aggies and every other program in America should follow Spurrier’s lead when it comes to corralling star power.

“Every little thing I do is something big," Clowney told The State. "I just get a laugh out of it. (Spurrier) keeps telling me, ‘JD why do they keep asking questions about you?’ I say, ‘I don’t know coach.’ ”

Now, for some links:

• Mark McGwire on the steroid era: "I wish I never was a part of it." And I wish I could win Powerball.

• Is Geno Smith really going to win the starting quarterback job from Mark Sanchez in New York?

• A cyclist gets a serious case of the cramps during a TV interview:

• Kobe Bryant says he is shattering the recovery timetable for his Achilles injury.

• Damian Lillard knew the person who the movie Fruitvale Station is based on.

• An X-Games motocross rider celebrated her apparent win a bit too early, then crashed, then lost the race:

• Airport gambling isn’t working in Minnesota, and it’s impacting funding for the new Vikings stadium.

• Tim Tebow is still a star off the field in New England.

• Eternal 14-year-old JaVale McGee drove around scaring people with a horn:

• Remember when DeShawn Stevenson was calling LeBron overrated?

• Meanwhile, LeBron just wants some space, please.

• This is how your Clint-Dempsey-to-Seattle sausage is made.

• Chris Who-we? Vikings rookie Jeff Locke launched a punt 90 yards.

• A 5-foot-10 guy did a between-the-legs dunk over Blake Griffin:

• From big boned to the Big Leagues, Oakland A’s pitcher Dan Strailey’s weight loss helped him achieve his Major League dream.

• The Green Bay Packers are having a tough time getting a street named after Mike McCarthy.

• Here is Chipotle-buyer Bubba Watson doing something weird:

• Former Detroit Red Wing Shawn Burr died at 47.

They sure do like their Cowboys in Dallas.

• Let it never be said that Jalen Rose doesn’t have opinions on baseball:

• Metta World Peace has a new rap song out:

• All the Green Bay quarterback competition needs is a little Brett Favre.

• Stan Van Gundy says racism is resurgent.

• These Iowa State throwbacks honor Jack Trice, the first African-American to play for the program:

• Michael Irvin: I am guilty of using the word Riley Cooper said.

• Deion Sanders stopped by and worked with DBs at Houston Texans camp.

• A Kansas City Royals fan was arrested after hanging out in the Kauffman Stadium fountain:

• Despite his involvement in an April bar fight, LSU running back Jeremy Hill has been reinstated by the team.

• Georgia wideout Chris Conley shows there is plenty of good in college football.

• Bill Walton rocked on Grateful Dead Night at AT&T Park:

• Rod Marinelli was reportedly "broke up" over not being mentioned in Warren Sapp’s Hall of Fame enshrinement speech.

• You can pick the pin placement for a hole at this weekend’s PGA Championship.

• Check out this 3D video of Dave Robinson’s Pro Football Hall of Fame ring.

• Yo, Coach London, it’s “formally,” not “formerly”: