Tag:Cam Newton investigation
Posted on: December 11, 2010 1:45 pm
Edited on: December 11, 2010 1:48 pm

Who Is OJ voting for? [VIDEO]

Posted by Chip Patterson

[Two Minutes with Bomani Jones is a weekly web series by the host of The Morning Jones on Score Radio - Sirius Chanel 98. I produce the episodes, so yeah, there's that.  Enjoy this take on the Cam Newton Heisman discussion.]

Tonight, the Heisman trust will hand its signature statue off to another young superstar of the college game.  More than likely, that superstar will be Auburn quarterback Cam Newton.  With odds stacked heavily in his favor, this thing seems signed, sealed, and delivered already.  With the swirling NCAA investigation, Newton's eligibility questions have led many voters to leave Newton off their ballot.  They have gone on to make their opinion heard, claiming to support the "integrity" clause of the Heisman mission.  Integrity?  Really?

In the recent Two Minutes with Bomani Jones, we ask the question on everyone's mind during this controversial voting process.

Who is O.J. voting for?

Posted on: December 1, 2010 12:58 pm

NCAA declares Cam Newton eligible

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Here's some bad news for TCU or any other school or fan base out there hoping that the hammer was going to come down on Cam Newton.  The NCAA declared Newton eligible on Wednesday.

On Monday the NCAA that a violation of amateurism rules took place, and Auburn declared Newton ineligible on Tuesday as they're required to do.  Still, using the evidence it had, the NCAA found that while Cecil Newton along with Kenny Rogers did in fact try to solicit money for his son, Cam Newton was unaware of it and the NCAA decided to reinstate his eligibility.  Though according to the agreement between the NCAA and Auburn, Cecil Newton's access to the Auburn athletic department has been limited.

The relationship between Kenny Rogers and Mississippi State has been dissolved.

“Our members have established rules for a fair and equal recruitment of student-athletes, as well as to promote integrity in the recruiting process,” said Kevin Lennon, NCAA vice president for academic and membership affairs. “In determining how a violation impacts a student-athlete’s eligibility, we must consider the young person’s responsibility. Based on the information available to the reinstatement staff at this time, we do not have sufficient evidence that Cam Newton or anyone from Auburn was aware of this activity, which led to his reinstatement. From a student-athlete reinstatement perspective, Auburn University met its obligation under NCAA bylaw 14.11.1. Under this threshold, the student-athlete has not participated while ineligible.” 

All of which is a fancy way of saying that every single win that Auburn had with Cam Newton as its quarterback will stand, and that any win from here on out will also stand.  Which means that if Auburn beats South Carolina on Saturday, it will be playing for a national title, and if it wins that game, it won't be stripped of it any time in the future.

Which, obviously, is fantastic news for Auburn, Cam Newton, and Auburn fans everywhere.
Posted on: November 18, 2010 2:17 pm
Edited on: November 18, 2010 2:18 pm

VIDEO: Cam Newton song parody

Posted by Tom Fornelli

This video is popping up just about everywhere, so I guess we might as well post it here.  To be honest, I'm kind of surprised it took so long for something like this to pop up on the internet.  I guess since this whole Cam Newton story keeps developing with new plot twists just about everyday, everyone has been too busy trying to figure out what's going on to take the time to make fun of it.

Though if people have enough time to come up with insane yet enthralling conspiracy theories on message boards, you'd think someone would find the time to put on a Halloween pimp costume hat, grab an acoustic guitar, a camcorder and get to work.  So, without further ado, I present to you, some dude named Moonpie.

Courtesy of EDSBS
Posted on: November 17, 2010 10:48 pm
Edited on: November 17, 2010 10:49 pm

Auburn booster denies any contact with Newton

Posted by Adam Jacobi

According to a report on TMZ, the FBI's probe of the Cam Newton investigation has expanded to include dog track owner Milton McGregor, a prominent Auburn booster -- and recent bribery arrestee.

Obviously, McGregor's not terribly thrilled about being connected to the investigation and the FBI in any way, so his attorney has just released a statement on McGregor's behalf to WSFA 12 in Montgomery. Here's the statement in full:

"Contrary to postings on celebrity and sports blogs, Milton McGregor has never had any contact direct or indirect with Cam Newton, Cecil Newton - Cam's father, Kenny Rogers or anyone purporting to represent Cam Newton. Mr. McGregor has never been asked to provide money for any recruitment or compensation of any current or prospective student athlete including Cam Newton at Auburn or any other school, and has never provided any type of compensation in that regard period no exceptions. As a proud supporter of Auburn University Mr. McGregor wants it known that he does cheer loudly for Cam Newton and thinks he is the best athlete in college football."

It's worth pointing out that the only allegations made by TMZ are that the FBI is investigating McGregor, not that he necessarily had any role in the Newton recruitment, so his denial is something between "misleading" and "flat-out incorrect." Still, this is the first time McGregor's been connected to this investigation at all, so there's a lot more information that's going to need to come out before any worthwhile analysis of the McGregor situation can occur.

Photo via al.com

Posted on: November 17, 2010 4:18 pm
Edited on: November 17, 2010 4:19 pm

Report: FBI probe connected to Auburn booster

Posted by Tom Fornelli

The Cam Newton saga continues at Auburn, as the NCAA continues to investigate the circumstances of the Heisman front-runner's recruitment after he left Florida.  Things have gotten so serious that the FBI is now involved, and that is never a good thing for anybody.  For the FBI to be involved there has to be something going on behind all this that isn't just limited to college football.

And now we may have an idea in why the FBI cares about Cam Newton.

According to a report on TMZ, the FBI's investigation has now branched out towards an Auburn booster who has given over $1 million to the school and was recently arrested in a bribery sting.
According to sources connected to the probe ... FBI agents looking into the Newton recruiting controversy are also asking about Milton McGregor -- a dog track owner arrested last month for allegedly bribing Alabama politicians to vote pro gambling.

We're told agents asked someone connected to the Newton case if he was familiar with McGregor or the bribery scandal. 

It's unclear what, if any, direct connection McGregor has to Newton. Back in 2008, McGregor did donate a million bucks toward construction of a new arena at Auburn.

While it's unclear what connection that McGregor could have to Newton, it's not exactly all that difficult to do the math.  McGregor has given money to Auburn in the past.  Cecil Newton allegedly was trying to sell his son to the highest bidder.  I'm not saying, but I'm just saying.

Whatever the case, this isn't good news for Auburn or Cam Newton.
Posted on: November 17, 2010 1:30 pm

Scout: Newton a 1st rounder, but with "questions"

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

If the NCAA investigation into Cam Newton concludes (or concludes in the somewhat near future, anyway) with the Heisman front-runner ruled ineligible for the 2010 season, it's likely going to cost Newton a lot: his Heisman chances, his team's shot at a BCS title, possibly his chance to play in an SEC championship game, various other sundry awards and honors that are surely on their way.

If there's any silver lining to a possible NCAA-dictated suspension, it's that eligible or not, Newton will be free to play in the NFL as soon as he leaves Auburn. But that's where the scandal has already cost him something: the benefit of the doubt with NFL scouts :

One director of scouting for an AFC team said Tuesday that Newton will be a first-round pick should he decide to skip his senior season but added that not every franchise will be interested because of his off-the-field issues.

“There are going to be questions about the kid,” said the scout, who requested anonymity. “You’re going to want to sit down and do a lot of interviews with him, because he never makes a check or a call at the line of scrimmage. He gets everything from the sidelines, so all that stuff is going to be new to him.

“We’ll want to see how smart he is, and then there is the naive part. He let his dad pick his school for him and all this kind of stuff. If this situation gets really bad, there might be teams that just don’t want the PR nightmare.”

Of course, the scout makes clear that things can only get so bad for Newton from an NFL standpoint; even if "not every franchise" will want to take a flyer on a prospect with Newton's off-field baggage, if the scout is correct that Newton won't slip out of the first round, even going 32nd overall isn't a bad consolation prize by any means. The scout describes Newton as a "big ball of clay" with an "NFL body" whose ability to shed tacklers and deliver throws could make him a "matchup nightmare" in the "right system." Perhaps the biggest takeaway from the scout's comments is that between his first-round stock and the inevitable eligibility questions that will dog him, it appears highly unlikely that Newton will want to spend another season under the microscope at Auburn .

The scout does, however, also worry that Newton could fall in with "the wrong crowd" or be overly influenced by his father Cecil Newton , who (as you know) has been accused as negotiating Newton's enrollment at Mississippi State in exchange for money. Nothing other than acing his eventual pre-draft interviews will make those question marks go away, and for that, Newton has the investigation to thank. That much damage, it appears, has already been done.

Posted on: November 16, 2010 4:05 pm

Key figures in Newton case talking to NCAA, FBI?

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

College football fans (not to mention poll voters, BCS administrators, exhausted reporters, etc.) hoping for some movement forward on the Cam Newton investigation appear to be getting their wish today based on a series of reports out of the South. Two of those are recapped here , namely:

-- Former Mississippi State quarterback and Bulldog supporter John Bond met with the FBI today, according to Bond's attorney; Bond was the player (allegedly) originally approached as a possible source of funds by ...

-- Kenny Rogers , another former State player and agent who has claimed Cecil Newton asked him to arrange payment for his son's services; according to a Dallas radio host, Rogers is speaking to NCAA investigators as we type.

But that's not all. Notorious Alabama radio personality Paul Finebaum has added a new name into the mix of potential Newton informants and NCAA interviewees: Jody Wright , currently an Alabama graduate assistant and formerly a State director of football operations, who Finebaum reported was interviewed yesterday.

Obviously, the NCAA isn't going to confirm or comment on any of this. But to disregard all of these reports (not to mention the ones out of Birmingham that Auburn met with NCAA officials before the Georgia game) would be trying too hard. Whispers from the Auburn-colored corners of the Internet are even suggesting that a ruling could come as early as this week .

Since that would be a decision-making process of nearly unprecedented speed for an organization universally panned for its methodical approach, it seems unlikely the NCAA will make a move quite that soon. But clearly, the NCAA is on the case and moving with what appears to be all possible haste. Early estimates that placed a conclusion to the Newton case early next year -- following a BCS championship game which may or may not include Auburn, depending on their performance in the Iron Bowl grudge match with Alabama -- look at this moment to be on the pessimistic side.

Considering how much is at stake -- not only for Auburn but for all of college football, should its biggest individual award and national championship be awarded to a player later found to be ineligible -- that may not be surprising, even for the NCAA.

Posted on: November 16, 2010 11:26 am

Chizik could be docked $60,000 per month

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Cam Newton brouhaha aside, this has been a dream season for Auburn and head coach Gene Chizik , who had to have only seen 11-0 starts and top-two BCS rankings in his wildest fantasies when he was trudging through his final 2-10 season at Iowa State .

Which might explain why Chizik agreed to contract terms that might be costing him , say, a new Lexus each month, according to a USA Today report:
Chizik's total compensation for this season was set at $2.25 million. With his team's record at 11-0, he is still in contention for his maximum of $1.3 million in athletically related bonuses. He also could get $150,000 based on the team's academic performance.

However, Auburn can suspend one or both of the nearly $60,000 payments it makes monthly to Chizik for personal endorsement rights and TV, radio and personal appearances "in the event an investigation is instituted by Auburn, the SEC or the NCAA into alleged major rules violations involving Coach and/or the football program," the contract says. Auburn senior associate AD Scott Carr, in an e-mail, declined to comment.
Learning that such a highly unusual clause (which punishes Chizik not for uncovered violations but merely for an investigation ) exists in Chizik's contract helps explain why the Tiger athletic department attempted to insert the same into new men's basketball coach Tony Barbee 's contract before Barbee and his lawyers objected. But learning that Chizik signed on anyway also emphasizes just how much Chizik was willing to sacrifice to make the leap from Ames to Auburn. (It may also emphasize that the Auburn athletic department, much criticized in some corners for playing Newton against Georgia, does take its compliance obligations seriously.)

The good news for Chizik is that at this stage, despite the "no comment" from Carr, he's probably still drawing that $60,000 per month; while the NCAA investigation into Newton's eligibility (or lack thereof) continues, no one has yet reported that Auburn itself, Chizik, or any of his staff has fallen under that investigation's scope.

Of course, with new twists and turns emerging in the Newton case seemingly by the day, Chizik might not want to include that money in his December

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com