ESPN obtained a photograph showing Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel signing for South Florida autograph broker Drew Tieman in early January. It is the first visual evidence of Manziel signing for Tieman. The photo shows Manziel, wearing a long-sleeved maroon-colored shirt, standing over a covered pool table signing photos of his image while Tieman looks on. The photo was reportedly taken in the Fort Lauderdale, Fla., apartment that Tieman lived in at the time. Tieman was not available for comment and Texas A&M has not made Manziel available for interviews this week. Texas A&M, ranked No. 6 in major polls, takes on No. 1 Alabama Saturday. ESPN reported in August that Manziel signed more than 1,100 autographs for Tieman over a two-day period in South Florida while in Miami for the BCS championship game. Tieman reportedly paid more than $10,000 to authenticate the autographs with James Spence Authentication. The company's officials told ESPN that every signature is authentic. Manziel signed at least 4,400 autographs for Tieman, two brokers in Connecticut at the Walter Camp Awards and Kevin Freistat, an autograph broker who had at least one signing session with Manziel in South Florida in January and another in Houston later that month, according to the ESPN report. The NCAA and Texas A&M released a joint press release in late August stating that an investigation could not find evidence that Manziel was paid for signing the autographs "based on information provided by Manziel." However, Manziel was suspended for the first half of the Aggies' season opener Rice because he violated NCAA bylaw 18.104.22.168, which states that student-athletes cannot allow products with their names and likenesses to be sold even if they do not profit from it.
- Sports & Recreation
- Johnny Manziel