His name is Johnny Manziel, but you might know him better as “Johnny Football.” At least, that’s what he, his family and Texas A&M prefer it that way. The family/school combination is pursuing a trademark for the boyish nickname that is sweeping the college football nation by storm.
Manziel, the redshirt freshman starting quarterback from Texas A&M, has led the Aggies to an 8-2 start including a tough win over #1-ranked Alabama this past Saturday. Manziel was given the nickname by Texas A&M fans near the beginning of this season. The trademark would prevent vendors from selling anything with “Johnny Football” on it. However, with strict NCAA rules regarding amateurism:
In order to keep Manziel’s eligibility intact, neither Texas A&M nor the family can sell products with Johnny Football that in any way hints of a connection to Manziel.
And considering that securing a trademark can depend on the recipient actually using the mark in commerce, it could take years (until Manziel declares for the NFL draft or is no longer eligible) before the Manziel family actually owns it.
In other words, Johnny will be old enough to go by John by the time the trademark becomes official. And by then, nobody will care.