Johnny Manziel to start at QB

Updated: August 16, 2012, 10:33 AM ET
By Sam Khan Jr. | GigEmNation

COLLEGE STATION, Texas -- Coming into fall training camp, Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin said he would name a starting quarterback as early as two days into camp or as late as two weeks before the Aggies' season opener.

True to his word, Sumlin did just that, officially tabbing redshirt freshman Johnny Manziel as the Aggies' starter for the Aug. 30 matchup against Louisiana Tech in Shreveport, La.

The 6-foot-1, 200-pound Manziel won an open competition that included redshirt sophomores Jameill Showers and Matt Joeckel and true freshman Matt Davis.

Manziel was a Parade All-American at Kerrville (Texas) Tivy where he earned a state and national player of the year award.

"Johnny has performed the best at this stage and we will proceed until the season opener with him getting the first-team reps," Sumlin said. "My policy is simple really; the best player plays. Competition is a great thing and we need more competition at all of our positions. All of our quarterbacks have competed well and I expect them to continue to push Johnny."

Fall camp began with Showers getting reps with the first team but Manziel came on strong as time wore on. In the Aggies' scrimmage on Saturday, Manziel shined, leading the offense to touchdowns on four of the six drives where he was taking snaps. He made quick decisions, showed the ability to extend plays with his feet and make completions on the run. He appeared to grasp the offense well in the time he was out there.

Since the scrimmage, Manziel has taken the first-team reps during practices. Sumlin prefers not to play multiple quarterbacks in his offense.

"I have traditionally not been a two- or three-quarterback system guy," Sumlin said. "I think a guy's got to feel like he's got the team and I feel like a guy's got to feel like he's the backup and when his opportunity comes, if it comes, then he needs to be ready to play instead of shoveling guys in and out.

Sam Khan | email

Texas A&M/SEC reporter

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