HOOVER — Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin is more than ready to move from questions about the Johnny Manziel era.
While the Aggies enjoyed great success both on and off the field with Manziel, Sumlin let everyone know he would rather not be asked about his former quarterback.
The first reporter to broach the subject Tuesday wanted to know “what it’s like not coaching Johnny Manziel” and if Sumlin “missed him.”
“Let me get this straight, the question was, ‘What’s it like not coaching Johnny Manziel?’” Sumlin asked as other reporters laughed. “I’ll say this. College football is a lot different than the NFL. … The difference is, in college football every two, three years you’re going to have turnover, and you have to have a plan for that. … With that being said, your first question to me is irrelevant.”
But that answer wasn’t enough as Sumlin’s third question was also about the Cleveland Browns’ quarterback. This time, a reporter wanted to know if Sumlin has spoken with Manziel about his offseason since being drafted.
“Is this the SEC Media Days?” Sumlin asked with a smile. “No, that’s a great question about the Cleveland Browns. Anybody else got something?”
Still, Sumlin acknowledged that there will never be another Manziel. But the first step of moving on is recruiting new talent. For the Aggies, five-star quarterback Kyle Allen helped ease the pain a little.
“You wouldn’t be so excited if you hadn’t recruited the Gatorade Player of the Year out of the state of Texas at quarterback and the number one quarterback in the country behind him (Manziel),” Sumlin said.
Allen was the nation’s No. 1 quarterback and the No. 10 overall prospect for the 2014 recruiting cycle, according to 247Sports Composite rankings. He’ll compete with Kenny Hill to follow in Manziel’s footsteps.
Along with Allen, the nation’s No. 2 and No. 9 overall prospects in defensive end Myles Garrett and wide receiver Speedy Noil, respectively, choose the Aggies over a host of other school. Those three and 20 others made up the nation’s No. 5 recruiting class. The infusion of talent has Sumlin confident going forward.
“We haven’t accomplished everything we’ve wanted to accomplish over the last couple years, but I think there’s no doubt that we’re headed in the right direction,” Sumlin said. “Our university is giving us the opportunity, the means and the support to put us on that track to be extremely successful.”
Sports Writer Marq Burnett: On Twitter @Marq_Burnett.