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Braxton Miller new Heisman Trophy favorite as Manziel's odds slide

By Chip Patterson | College Football/Basketball Writer

Johnny Manziel's eventful offseason has concluded with news that could potentially affect his eligibility for Texas A&M in 2013. Manziel's alleged "five-figure" autograph session in January has prompted investigation, reportedly by the NCAA as well as media outlets, into the memorabilia practices of the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback.

Aggies coach Kevin Sumlin spoke to the media on Monday as the team opened practice. He said the school is currently doing its "due diligence" regarding the ESPN report, but there is no immediate plan to take action regarding Manziel's status.

But Manziel's status in the 2013 Heisman Trophy odds, according to Bovada, has been altered with the new development, along with many of the odds for Texas A&M's 2013 season.

"Considering Texas A&M was among the top-5 favorites to win the BCS with Manziel playing, there is no doubt that this investigation has forced us to close down those odds, along with win totals, conference odds and pretty much anything that involves the Aggies or Manziel until we have more information," Kevin Bradley, the sports book manager for Bovada, said on Monday.

"If he does in fact get suspended by the NCAA and is not starting against Alabama, the Aggies will move from getting only 4.5 points to at least two-touchdown underdogs in that game. It will also impact the spreads on their whole schedule moving their win total from 9.5 to 7.5 and their BCS Championship odds from 12-1 to 33-1, if not higher. Ohio State's Braxton Miller who was at 13-2 odds to win the Heisman will now be the new front-runner with odds of under 5-1."

Bovada is also offering odds on whether Johnny Manziel will play in Texas A&M's first game, against Rice on Aug. 31. As of Monday afternoon, "No" was the odds-on favorite at 1-3. A "Yes" wager is currently set at 2-1.

Manziel's odds for the 2013 Heisman Trophy have been dropped to 15-1, while Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller has moved up as the new frontrunner. Miller was named the Big Ten Preseason Player of the Year last month, and many believe the Buckeyes will be in contention for a BCS title after their 12-0 performance in 2012.

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