For those of you who aren't aware, Cam Newton is—for the time being—the quarterback for the second-ranked Auburn Tigers and a front runner for the Heisman Trophy.
And before this week, that was pretty much all we knew about the former Westlake standout or his father, Cecil.
But allegations stemming from Cam's recruitment from junior college earlier this year and in 2009 have thrust the ominous glare of speculation and presumed guilt upon both the superstar QB and his father.
According to reports, Cecil Newton approached recruiters from Mississippi State University and requested that $180,000 be paid in exchange for his son's signature on a letter of intent.
Also according to reports, Cam Newton decided to attend Auburn instead because his father said, "the money was too much."
If these reports are proven to be true, there's no doubt that Auburn University will be heavily sanctioned and likely put on probation—which is nothing new to the school that was caught doing this exact same thing in 1993.
So who's more to blame in this situation? Cam Newton? His father? I say that it's neither.
The obvious culprit in the Cam Newton saga has to be Auburn University.
Not only has the school seen one undefeated season prove meaningless due to an almost identical infraction, but the Athletic Department clearly did not do its homework when recruiting the College Park native.
Newton, a five-star recruit coming out of high school, played his first two years of collegiate football at the University of Florida, but there was plenty of off-the-field action that led to his ultimate departure.
Most notably, Newton was arrested for buying a stolen laptop and then attempting to cover up his second-degree thievery by chucking the stolen laptop out of his dorm room window.
That incident led to Newton's dismissal from the Florida football team, but there were plenty of other reasons for the Gators to cut ties with the immensely talented quarterback.
For instance, Newton was also caught cheating on an in-class test, putting his name on another student's paper and purchasing a term paper off the Internet and trying to turn it in as his own.
Due to these academic infractions, Newton was reportedly scheduled to go in front of Florida's Student Conduct Committee before transferring to Blinn College, a junior college located in Brenham, Texas.
But that's not all.
Newton was also cited 13 times—that's right 13—for driving violations during his stay in Gainesville, Fla., that included driving without a driver's license (twice) and driving on a suspended license—a case that is currently in continuance.
That's a total of 16 "errors in judgment" for Newton in roughly 17 months as a Gator.
Sure, Newton's on-field ability is mighty enticing to any University's football program, but it was his off-field baggage that should have been given more thought during his recruitment.
And for that oversight, Auburn University should be blamed and will inevitably be punished—if these allegations are proven to be true, of course.
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