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After a week of intense speculation, embattled Auburn quarterback Cam Newton took the field and played Saturday. The Heisman Trophy front-runner dominated, rushing for 148 yards, throwing for 151 and accounting for four touchdowns in the Tigers' 49-31 victory. No. 2 Auburn (11-0) moved one step closer to a possible BCS National Championship Game appearance.
But the Cam Newton news, as we all know, was not all on the field.
More people have gone on the record to say that Newton's father, Cecil, had solicited six-figured sums for his son's commitment to Mississippi State. The NCAA has interviewed Cecil and Cam Newton both. According to the Birmingham News, Cecil admitted to the pay-for-play solicitation but insisted that his son had no knowledge of it. The NCAA has briefed Auburn about their investigation.
If all this wasn't enough, there's also the rumor that Newton was caught cheating on tests while at Florida. Finally, Auburn has hired ex-NCAA Committee on Infractions Chairman Gene Marsh to work on Cam Newton issue, reports Yahoo News. Marsh, it should be noted, is a law professor at arch-rival Alabama.
With Cam Newton news breaking daily, the NCAA felt compelled to re-announce that "Solicitation of cash or benefits by either a potential student-athlete or another person on their behalf is not allowed under NCAA rules."
Against this almost surreal backdrop, many assumed the school would sit Cam Newton pending the ongoing investigation. But the embattled quarterback played, and played very well.
So unless something quite drastic happens, the Cam Newton news will continue to be: Auburn is standing behind their man.
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