Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel is opening the door for contenders like U of L's Teddy Bridgewater to take his Heisman Trophy.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – It was a good week in Teddy Bridgewater's unseating of Johnny Manziel as the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner – and Bridgewater didn't have to throw a pass.
Welcome to the third edition of the Monday Rewind, where I share snapshots from the previous week and forecast what we will be fussing about this week. Manziel, the Texas A&M quarterback, and Bridgewater, the quarterback at the University of Louisville, made the opening snap for this week easy.
Remember that last week kicked off with Steve Andress's wonderful story about Bridgewater's essentially unannounced trip to a downtown hospital to visit a U of L fan recovering from surgery for Crohn's Disease. U of L did not leak the story to stir goodwill for Bridgewater, who declined to talk about the visit. Andress uncovered the story by tracing a thread on Twitter.
Manziel accepted an invitation to the prestigious Manning Passing Academy in Thibodaux, La., over the weekend -- and then was absent on the final day. Some say he wasn't feeling well and went home. There is talk of dehydration, although I thought Peyton Manning had a sponsorship deal with Gatorade.
Others say Manziel was hung-over and asked to leave. Others on Twitter took the story to Hookah-ville, a place where I am certain that Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin didn't want it to go.
We'll never know. But we do know that Manziel has embraced the Johnny Good Times persona during the off-season and Teddy Bridgewater has embraced the role of the team guy who does not want a Heisman Trophy publicity campaign.
Bridgewater won't need a campaign. Manziel is taking care of that.
You expect a 20-year-old college football super-duper star to cash in on his fame -- as best as the NCAA will allow it. You'd also expect that somebody would have told Manziel that the Manning gathering was kind of a big deal.
*Manziel and Texas A&M aren't on Kentucky's schedule this season, but the Wildcats and Aggies remain on a collision course. Their scheduled sessions at Southeastern Conference Media Days in Hoover, Ala., overlap from 8:30 until 11:10 a.m. (CDT) Wednesday.
Manziel's period in the main interview room is slotted for 9:10-9:40 – if he is recovered from that nasty bug that threw him for a loss in Louisiana. I'll try to remember to bring him several extra liters of water. John Lewis and I are making the trip for WDRB.
*Three days, 14 teams and more than 1,000 credentialed media members only begins to explain the unrelenting overkill of SEC Media Days. But with only one day until the hurricane of hyperbole begins, it's time for the opening question:
What will be the biggest story in Hoover?
Manziel's tummy ache?
Alabama's chances of delivering a three-peat?
The Vanderbilt scandal that has forced the dismissal of four players?
The quartet of new SEC coaches, which includes Mark Stoops at Kentucky?
There's a poll attached to this story. You decide.
I'm going with Johnny Football. He likes publicity. Nick Saban does not.
*Cody Zeller first field goal attempt in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas was an air ball from about 15 feet last Friday night.
That was the last time Zeller missed everything – or nearly anything.
Zeller, the former Indiana University center, was the best player on the floor Sunday, scoring 21 points with 13 rebounds and two blocks for Charlotte. Teammate Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, the former UK national champ, made all four of his shots and scored 11 points with three boards.
Other local numbers:
*Former U of L center Terrence Jennings had a big game, delivering 16 points and eight rebounds for the Knicks.
*Former U of L guard Chris Smith failed to score, but had four assists for the Knicks.
*Samardo Samuels, another former U of L center, had 15 points and six boards for the Clippers.
*Former UK winner Darius Miller had eight points and three rebounds for the Pelicans.
*Christian Watford of IU has five points and two rebounds for Dallas.
*Brad Stevens made the right move – again – when he visited Rajon Rondo last week at Rondo's annual basketball camp here in Louisville. First, Stevens saluted Rondo during his opening press conference in Boston. Then he drove to town and publicly confirmed again that he wants Rondo as his point guard as the Celtics begin their rebuild without Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Larry Bird, Dave Cowens, Bob Cousy and Bill Russell next season.
Not everybody, however, is convinced that Rondo's future remains in Boston.
Matt Moore covers the NBA for CBSSports.com. He wrote here that the Detroit Pistons are interested in acquiring Rondo from the Celtics, but might only be offering former UK guard Brandon Knight and an expiring contract.
That won't be enough. Boston would prefer Andre Drummond, the second-year center from UConn -- and he's not a guy the Pistons are ready to move.
*If you were making a list of SEC cities to visit for a game, where would you rank Lexington?
It would be in my top five -- with Athens, Ga., Nashville, Tenn., Oxford, Miss., and Baton Rouge, La.
Actually the top three are Tuscaloosa, Starkville and Baton Rouge. No offense to the fine folks in Mississippi, but I don't know anybody who has covered the SEC who would put Starkville in the top three.
The bottom three -- starting at the bottom? Nashville, Lexington and Columbia, S. C.