COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) – Just call him Kenny Trill.
Many, including Johnny Manziel himself, started calling new Texas A&M quarterback Kenny Hill by the nickname Kenny Football after his record-setting, 511-yard passing game in an upset of South Carolina last week.
But the sophomore quarterback says that’s Manziel’s thing – and he prefers Kenny Trill.
“I like that one,” he said. “That one’s cool.”
Before settling on Kenny Trill, Hill went through a laundry list of nicknames people have suggested since Thursday’s game.
“I heard there’s Kenny Trill, Kenny Thrill, King of the Hill, Kenny Football, Kenny Chill, Kenny Touchdown,” he said. “I mean there’s too many of them.”
Though trill is a word to describe a vibratory sound, that’s not what it means in rap culture. It’s a hybrid of true and real and has long been used by Texas rapper Bun B, who calls himself Bun B Trill OG.
“I know about Bun B and I know coach Sumlin has got a little relationship with Bun B,” Hill said. “So hopefully he’ll let me be Kenny Trill.”
Maybe that will happen one day, but for now Bun B isn’t quite ready to sign off on the moniker. He tweeted: “Like the idea of “Kenny Trill” but I think @coachsumlin would agree one good game alone doesn’t make you trill. He’s on his way though!”
Hill said scores of people have approached him for pictures. They won’t get them: Hill said coach Kevin Sumlin told him not to take them because “Johnny got in so much trouble over pictures.”
Manziel, the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner for Texas A&M, was suspended for the first half of the Aggies’ season opener against Rice for what the school said was an “inadvertent” violation of NCAA rules involving signing autographs. He also received criticism after being photographed after the Cotton Bowl in a nightclub holding a bottle of champagne and more criticism when he posted a picture of himself with a wad of cash from gambling.
Sumlin denied telling Hill that he wasn’t allowed to take pictures.
“I told the guys that if they ever want to pass the blame, blame it on me,” Sumlin said with a laugh. “Johnny didn’t do that a lot last year. Kenny already took advantage of that. But he needs to let me know. You’ve got something like that, just blame it on me. The next step is let me know.”
Texas A&M’s coaching staff even got on board with the nickname on Monday. When asked about Hill’s turning into a celebrity overnight, offensive coordinator Jake Spavital answered: “Kenny Trill, you mean?”
Spavital said he didn’t have any strong feelings about the nickname, but knew that he didn’t want to copy Manziel’s nickname.
“That’s none of my business, but I knew he didn’t want Kenny Football and that’s the main thing,” Spavital said. “Kenny Trill, I had to ask him what trill meant.”
Hill was named Manziel’s replacement on Aug. 16 after beating out freshman Kyle Allen for the job left vacant when Manziel left early for the NFL and a backup job with the Cleveland Browns.
Hill saw limited action last season, throwing for 183 yards and a touchdown in four games. He was the Texas Gatorade Player of the Year as a senior at Southlake Carroll High School after throwing for 2,291 yards and 20 touchdowns, and running for 905 yards and 22 scores.
He and the ninth-ranked Aggies play their first game at the newly renovated Kyle Field on Saturday when they host Lamar.
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