Aggie chancellor defends Manziel

Texas A&M chancellor John Sharp said a mouthful in less than two minutes this week in an interview with the Dallas Morning News, defending Aggies quarterback Johnny Manziel’s character, questioning the credibility of his accusers, criticizing the NCAA and suggesting it is unfair for schools and the NCAA to make money off of athletes who aren’t allowed to make money off themselves.

Here is a full transcript:

”I can’t talk about that very much, but I know Johnny Manziel very well. He’s a good kid. He’s a lot better kid than I was when I was a freshman and sophomore in college. And he’s a good, honest kid.

“And I frankly — I don’t believe the stories that I hear from ticket brokers and folks like that that are trying to make money off of his name and things like that.

“I also think there is something — this is just me talking and not as the chancellor of the system — but, you know, something’s wrong with the system when we can make money off of our football players, the NCAA can make money off of our football players, and they can’t be treated like Olympic athletes. Olympic athletes at A&M are able to sell their signature, but the other kids can’t.

"And I suspect the courts or somebody or the NCAA is going to have to take a look at that and see whether or not you’re violating somebody’s antitrust deal. How can the NCAA, for instance, make money off of his jersey, and he can’t make two bucks off of something or something like that like other athletes can that happen to be in the Olympics.

“That’s just my opinion. I’ll tell you what’s true, without a doubt, is he is a good kid. He is an honest kid and he has his heart in the right place and I think a whole bunch of folks are mistreating him and I’m not very happy about that.”

The interviewer asked if he was hoping to see Manziel on the field when the season starts.

“That,” Sharp said, “would be an understatement.”