SO WHAT does Johnny Manziel do from here?
Saturday night in New York, the Texas A & M quarterback became the first freshman to win the Heisman Trophy. Just one, Oklahoma's Adrian Peterson in 2004, had ever finished second.
Only Ohio State's Archie Griffin has won it twice, in 1974-75. That's the next historical target.
In 2007 Florida's Tim Tebow became the first sophomore to hoist the hardware. The next season he was third, despite the fact that he led the Gators to a national title. He finished fifth as a senior, when they won their first 12 games before losing to second-ranked eventual national champion Alabama in the SEC title game.
Manziel, who unlike Peterson sat out a season as a redshirt, didn't even win the starting job until fall camp, weeks before the opener. He wound up passing for 3,419 yards and 24 touchdowns, while running for 1,181 and 19. That made him only the fifth FBS player to go over 3,000 and 1,000 in the same season, and he did it faster than anyone. But he probably won this thing by leading the Aggies past then-No. 1 Alabama on the road on Nov. 10.
A week later, No. 2 Kansas State lost badly at Baylor. Until then, Wildcat senior QB Collin Klein was still considered the favorite. He would end up a distant third, which means K-State is still looking for its first Heisman.
The only other Aggie winner was John David Crow in 1957.
The runner-up was Notre Dame senior linebacker Manti Te'o, who was trying to become the first defensive winner since Michigan's Charles Woodson 15 years ago. Teo's consolation will be playing against Alabama in the BCS final on Jan. 7 in Miami.
Manziel said his next goal is to help the Aggies win it all. The 10th-ranked Aggies went 10-2 this year, their first in the SEC. The losses were to No. 3 Florida and No. 9 LSU by a combined eight points. It was their first 10-win season since 1998, under first-year coach Kevin Sumlin. They'll get No. 12 Oklahoma, also 10-2, in the Cotton Bowl on Jan. 4.
"It just legitimizes what we are right now as a program," Sumlin said.
Last year's winner, Baylor's Robert Griffin III, was also a Texas high school product. As was Peterson. The 1977 winner, Texas running back Earl Campbell, is also from Tyler, where Manziel was born. He and Crow were in the audience at the Best Buy Theater in Times Square.
"It's mind-blowing," Manziel said. "I was more nervous than anything I've experienced in my whole life. This is a moment that I've dreamed about since I've been a kid running around the back yard, pretending I was [1984 winner] Doug Flutie throwing 'Hail Marys' to my dad . . . I want to keep it right next to my bed."
"I think everything we've done this year has had a huge impact."
And it might have had something to do with him breaking 2010 winner Cam Newton's SEC total offense record.
Johnny Football received 474 first-place votes and 2,029 points. Te'o got 321 and 1,706, the most ever for a pure defensive player.
"I'm relieved that it's over," said the guy who helped take the Fighting Irish to a place where they haven't been for a quarter-century. "Obviously what I did wasn't good enough. It's motivation.
"I'm excited I get the chance to prepare for 'Bama. Heisman Trophy or national championship, I'll take a national championship 100 times out of 100."
The defending champs, who are going for a third title in 4 years, of course might have something to say about that. And it won't come down to a bunch of opinions.
Klein (60, 894) was next, followed by two sophomores - Southern Cal wide receiver Marquis Lee (19, 207) and Ohio State QB Braxton Miller (three, 144).
But neither of them will start 2013 as the one to beat.
"For me to break that barrier is such an honor," Manziel said. "It's so humbling for me to . . . make history."
Maybe it won't be the last time.
Not bad, for someone who was arrested last June for his involvement in a street fight and still faces three pending misdemeanor charges.
"My fate was up in the air," Manziel admitted. "That incident has changed me. I always had the mindset that I wanted to be the catalyst. So maybe I held myself to a little higher expectations."