Johnny Manziel discussed allegations that he accepted payment from memorabilia dealers during a lengthy meeting with the NCAA on Sunday, according to reports.
Citing a source familiar with the investigation, Travis Haney of ESPN.com first reported that the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner met with NCAA investigators for nearly six hours and discussed allegations that he received payments for signing autographs in January.
According to Bruce Feldman of CBSSports.com citing an unnamed source, Manziel denied taking money during his meeting with the NCAA.
ESPN's "Outside the Lines" reported earlier in August that "the Texas A&M quarterback agreed to sign memorabilia in exchange for a five-figure flat fee" while he was visiting Miami for the BCS Championship Game in January.
In a subsequent report from ESPN, a broker said Manziel "was paid $7,500 for signing approximately 300 mini- and full-sized helmets on Jan. 11-12 while he was attending the Walter Camp Football Foundation event." The broker played a pair of videos on his cell phone for ESPN allegedly showing Manziel signing memorabilia in a hotel room, but not accepting money.
Texas A&M athletics director Eric Hyman issued a statement on Tuesday about Manziel and the team's season opener against Rice on Saturday. Via USA Today Sports:
"The focus of our coaches and student-athletes is solely on preparing for Rice this Saturday, and in the best interests of Texas A&M and the 100-plus student-athletes on the team, I have instructed Coach Sumlin, his staff and our student-athletes to refrain from commenting on or answering questions regarding the status of our starting quarterback, Johnny Manziel."