ESPN is reporting that Johnny Manziel was paid $7,500 for signing 300 autographs.
An autograph broker located on the East Coast says that Manziel was paid for signing approximately 300 mini and full-sized helmets. The signings took place on Jan. 11 and 12 while he was attending the Walter Camp Football Foundation event.
The broker played two cell phone videos showing Manziel signing Texas A&M helmets and footballs that were laid out on a bed in a hotel room. However, the video does not show the football star accepting any money. The broker says that signing took place at The Omni hotel in New Haven, CT.
The broker said the videos, totaling nine minutes in length, were initially shot as proof that the autographs were authentic. He also added that the videos were recorded without Manziel's knowledge. On the videos, ESPN reports hearing the Heisman winner say "you never did a signing with me," and adding if the broker told others about the signing, he would refuse to deal with him again.
Manziel added that if asked about the large amount of signed memorabilia, he would simply tell people that he had been approached by various autograph seekers. At one point, ESPN reports hearing the broker ask Manziel if he would take more cash for signing special inscriptions, but the football star declined, saying that he had done that before and it had raised questions.
The Heisman winner's friend and personal assistant, Nate Fitch, was not present or involved in those transactions.
Texas A&M senior associate athletic director confirmed to USA Today that the university has chosen to use the services of Birmingham, AL-based law firm Lightfoot, Franklin and White. Lightfoot is the firm that represented Auburn during the Cam Newton investigation in 2010. The investigation was centered around allegations that Newton's father had sought payment from Mississippi State to send his son to that school.
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