Johnny Manziel Wins Manning Award as College Football's Best QB

Timothy RappFeatured ColumnistJanuary 10, 2013

ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 04:  Johnny Manziel #2 of the Texas A&M Aggies celebrates his touchdown with Luke Joeckel #76 against the Oklahoma Sooners during the Cotton Bow lat Cowboys Stadium on January 4, 2013 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Johnny Manziel is known as "Johnny Football," and the nickname fits the Texas A&M quarterback aptly. However, perhaps we should start calling him "Johnny First," too.

Manziel has achieved quite a few firsts this year, including becoming the first freshman to ever win the Heisman Trophy. On top of that, as John Taylor of College Football Talk notes, Manziel achieved another first on Thursday by winning the Manning Award:

It was announced Thursday that Manziel has been named the recipient of the 2012-13 Manning Award. The Aggies quarterback is the first freshman recipient of the award as well as the first unanimous selection.

The award, named in honor of Archie, Peyton and Eli Manning, has been handed out annually since 2004 to the nation’s top quarterback and is the only award that takes a player’s bowl performance into account.

Okay, okay, so being the first freshman and unanimous winner of an award that has only existed since 2004 isn't quite as impressive as being the first frosh to win the Heisman. Still, it says quite a bit about the epic nature of Manziel's year.

For the season, the Texas A&M dynamo threw for 3,706 yards, 26 touchdowns and just nine interceptions. He also rushed for 1,410 yards and another 21 touchdowns—and he did so despite facing a touch SEC schedule.

He led the Aggies to an 11-2 record and big wins over Mississippi State, eventual national champions Alabama and Oklahoma in the Cotton Bowl. 

Along with winning the Heisman and Manning Award, he also took home the Davey O'Brien Award. 

Suffice it to say, "Johnny First" will have to do quite a bit in his sophomore season to live up to his freshman campaign, but methinks he'll live up to the hype.


Follow TRappaRT on Twitter