Blog Entry

Inside Cam's eligibility

Posted on: December 1, 2010 4:44 pm
Edited on: December 1, 2010 5:20 pm

Did the NCAA do Mike Slive a favor?

Certainly, tacitly.

Start with the timing of Wednesday's announcement that Cam Newton had been reinstated by the NCAA and was eligible to play. Curiously, it came three days before the SEC championship putting a nice, neat bow on a slimy case that had been ongoing for a month. It helps everyone -- Auburn, the NCAA and the SEC -- that this case is "resolved" before the biggest TV show on the SEC calendar.

The obvious attempt at a publicity grab helps everyone who was in line to be helped. The NCAA was being criticized for dragging its feet. There was a perception that Auburn was a rogue operation. The SEC and Slive, the commissioner, was taking heat for what it knew and when in the Cam case. Mississippi State is the whistle blower. Folks were starting to write how they would not vote Newton for Heisman. CBS couldn't help but mentioning the case on its telecasts.

"Honestly, it is a major story in college football and has to be covered fully," Sean McManus, president of CBS News and Sports, said this week.

There was, then, lingering embarrassment all around. That's why this was a bit of a grandstand move and, to me, still an unresolved case. 

"There are hundreds of cases each year where schools go to the NCAA an self-report a violation," said a source with intimate knowledge of the NCAA process. "If nobody knows about it, the NCAA reinstates the athlete and they don't make announcements. It's obviously because this was high profile and they want to try and put this thing to rest."

"It is interesting," said Doug Zeit, attorney for former Mississippi State player Kenny Rogers who was part of Wednesday's NCAA statement, "[this happened] three days before the championship."

We got our Cam back. We got our villain, his father Cecil. We got our co-conspirator. The NCAA said Cecil collaborated Rogers in a "pay-for-play scenario." The NCAA doesn't actually use names but when Slive added his own admonishment we knew who everyone was talking about.

"The conduct of Cam Newton's father and the involved individual is unacceptable and has no place in the SEC or in intercollegiate athletics," Slive said.

The NCAA cited a bylaw that applied to the case (12.3.3). It states that, "Any individual, agency or organization that represents a prospective student-athlete for compensation in placing the prospective student-athlete in a collegiate institution [getting] financial aid shall be considered an agent ..."

That seems to label Cecil who now will have limited access to Auburn athletics. What that means no one seems to know. Maybe Cecil can't become a financial advisor within 100 feet of Jordan-Hare Stadium. But what about Cam reportedly telling a Mississippi State recruiter that "the money was too much" at Auburn? Wednesday's release seems to let Auburn off the hook, but you have to read between the lines. Kevin Lennon, NCAA vice president for academic and membership affairs said, " ... at this time we do not have sufficient evidence that Cam Newton or anyone from Auburn was aware of this activity ..." (Emphasis added).

That should tell you the case is not over, but for the purposes of Saturday's SEC championship game it's game on. As for the bowl game? Check back with the NCAA later. This story isn't going to die after Saturday.

The bylaw (12.3.3) seems to clears up the NCAA interpretation of this case. A couple of weeks ago a lot of us were breathless over the apparent NCAA bylaw that applied to this case. It turns out the case probably revealed a gap in NCAA legislation. In essence, the NCAA had to find a bylaw that best fit the "crime," -- a parent soliciting money for his son's services without the son's knowledge.

However, the NCAA concluded that neither "Newton or anyone from Auburn was aware of this activity, which led to this reinstatement."

"I think the NCAA is trying to say, 'We found a violation so we're going to put this on the father and Kenny Rogers because they were acting as agents," the source said. "The violation occurs when the prospect agrees to be represented by them. [Cam] didn't know anything about it. My argument would be there hasn't been a violation here."

On that confusing basis, Newton was allowed to regain his eligibility. It also gives the deniability excuse to any kid who is ever shopped by his parents, uncle or handler. That's why the NCAA is working hard as I type on a new bylaw to close this loophole.

This story started with Rogers who apparently will not go quietly. Rogers, who runs a scouting service in Chicago, was reported to have sought $180,000-$200,000 from Mississippi State for Cam's services. The school on Wednesday "disassociated" Rogers. However, Rogers was not found to have been a representative of the university's athletic interests in the letter sent to him by the school. So what exactly did Rogers do wrong? 

"This is like a knife in his heart," Zeit said. "This is his alma mater. For them to suggest this is beyond the pale but not surprising ... He never solicited any money. That is patently false."

Zeit said Rogers will consider his legal options including defamation suits against "media outlets" and "people from Mississippi State."

Another reason to believe this isn't over: Check this second-to-the-last sentence in Wednesday's release -- The reinstatement process is likely to conclude prior to the close of an investigation.

Category: NCAAF

Since: Oct 12, 2010
Posted on: December 2, 2010 12:49 pm

Inside Cam's eligibility

If that's the case then there are a lot of Angels getting their wings right now! LOL 

Since: Oct 12, 2010
Posted on: December 2, 2010 12:48 pm

Inside Cam's eligibility

*I meant to say...How could he not? lol

Since: Oct 12, 2010
Posted on: December 2, 2010 12:47 pm

Inside Cam's eligibility

But in that case they found that Bush had knew about the money. I could he not. He live in an almost million dollar home and his parents didn't make a combined 100K a year. In this case Cam's father could totally have asked for and possibly received money w/o his knowledge. As for the TCU fans that are ticked off about being number should have joined a real conference earlier and played better teams!!! Auburn has beaten 5 top 25 teams and 4 of those teams were in the top 10 when they played Auburn. You can't argue with that!

Since: Sep 28, 2010
Posted on: December 2, 2010 12:39 pm

Inside Cam's eligibility

Reputation: 72
Level: Pro
Since: Oct 2, 2010
Posted on: December 2, 2010 10:47 amScore: 50 

Inside Cam's eligibility

every time a bama fan or a big10 homer angel gets their wings.

What are you even talking about.  You may want to be more careful about spewing random idiotic thoughts.  Your simple brain may grow accustomed to it and you may accidently spew one an idiotic thoughts at work, school or around a woman, causing people to wonder..."what is this idiot talking about"...

Since: Sep 28, 2010
Posted on: December 2, 2010 12:34 pm

Inside Cam's eligibility

What are you even talking about.  You may want to be more careful about spewing random idiotic thoughts.  Your simple brain may grow accustomed to it and you may accidently spew one an idiotic thoughts at work, school or around a woman, causing people to wonder..."what is this idiot talking about"...

Since: Jul 28, 2008
Posted on: December 2, 2010 11:33 am

Inside Cam's eligibility

That said, I want Auburn to win the championship but Cam should be ineligible at the very least , the rest of his career starting next season.

uh, it may be just me but I see CAM going to the NFL in April....just saying....

Since: Nov 18, 2010
Posted on: December 2, 2010 11:26 am

Inside Cam's eligibility

XFactor 99,

Forget about the emotions of TCU not getting a chance to play in the BCS championship. This is what happened to Auburn in 2004, and also Stanford and some other teams this year could argue that at this point in the season, they are better than Auburn or Oregon. This is why we need a playoff system.

In regards to your comment that Cam Newtown is getting off too light - What is the alternative? If a college player has a seedy relative or 3rd party acquaintance, who solicits without knowledge from the all star player, are we to suspend that player automatically and punish the school? If that is the case, then I guess I could call up Stanford right now and ask them for $$$ for the next game or he won't play.  Then I leak it to another peson who then goes to the press.  Next we should automatically suspend Luck and Stanford? That is the Dodd's solution. Come on, the punishment for any infraction or crime requires that the person who commited such infraction being proven guility, and that person receives the punishment. Any other solution would put us into the same situation as Nazi Germany - "Your neighbor says you are not a loyal supporter of the Party, Himmler says you must get on the train!"

I think Mr. Dodd needs to go back in a time machine to the Salem witch trials, or the McCartey communist hearings, or perhaps 1935 Germany, since his group think of accusation proving guilt would fit right in with those of the same mind set!





I'm sorry...but didnt a player get suspended for selling his jersey for a mere $500.00. So Cam Newton's dad took $200,000.00 and the he knew about it. And this is what he gets. No games..nothing! Just a "don't do it again"? Really? If TCU WASN'T in the 3 spot and some Big 10 school were, Newton would have his ass suspended. But becasue the Ring of terror(the Ohio States of the world), we can't have TCU in the national championship. The Big Boys don't want to be made fools of by the Mid-Majors.

Since: Nov 16, 2010
Posted on: December 2, 2010 11:22 am

Inside Cam's eligibility

When will NCAA and all college sports learn add a yearly per diem on top of the scholarship. Make it enough no need to take money. That at least can cut down the motivation some of the poor ones have to help families. Right now NCAA rules makes it tough for these kids to have jobs and have any money. Just add money so they don't need a job or not desperate for money. Won't cure the problem but will cut down a lot of it. I know they get a education with the scholarship. Yet schools make millions of these kids so give a bit more so they have some money. Parents like Cam's and Bushes well if they hurt the kids so be it. They made that choice and know it wrong. On agents NFL needs to ban them and work with NCAA if they break rules. Both set agent rules and enforce them.

Since: Jun 8, 2008
Posted on: December 2, 2010 11:20 am

Inside Cam's eligibility

 That said, I want Auburn to win the championship but Cam should be ineligible at the very least , the rest of his career starting next season.

Since: Apr 25, 2007
Posted on: December 2, 2010 11:19 am

when you make the rules - forget the rules

ncaa by-laws were violated. the player & the parents actions are considered equally as manyh have said. doesn't matter that it was cam's dad (not him) & 'without his knowledge' - simple: ncaa doesn't police itself, it does what it wants when it is convenient.

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