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Newton Is A Controversy Magnet

The website has to be the least popular site on the internet for Auburn fans.  Day after day, week after week, if there’s been a controversy or rumor surrounding the AU football team, SportsByBrooks has discussed it. 

Now they’re following up on a Twitter story — ugh — that spread like wildfire last night.  The details:

* Several Auburn and Oregon football players were at the Lakers-Suns NBA game in Phoenix last night.  Cam Newton’s seat was in the lower bowl, while most other players sat in the upper deck.

* Jim Dunaway — a Birmingham television and radio personality — was in attendance and tweeted during the game:

 “Hanging at Lakers-Suns… Pugh and most Auburn players in upper deck… Cam in lower bowl.  Thanks Barkley for the tix.”

* You can guess what happened next.  All the people who live on Twitter — because who doesn’t want to know what Jim Dunaway is doing at all hours of the day? — jumped on the tweet and figured he was thanking Barkley for getting Newton his lower bowl ticket.  And that would be an NCAA violation, right?  Right?

* When asked about the Twitterversy by Dan Patrick today, Barkley said, “Tell those people who are writing this to kiss my ass.  I did not get him those tickets.  But if he wanted tickets I would’ve gotten them for him.”

* Dunaway has since tweeted the following explanation:

“Not that anyone asked, but I was thanking Barkley for getting me and my friends into the game, not Cam.”

Lessons to be learned from all of this:

1.  The sooner Newton is out of the Southeastern Conference the better.  Auburn fans don’t want to hear it — but much of the controversy surrounding this young man comes from his and his father’s own actions over the years.  And Auburn haters don’t want to hear it, but some of the controversy surrounding this young man is utter hogwash and lies.  Everyone — including Tiger fans — should pray that Newton is in the NFL next season.  If not, God only knows what messes we’ll all be forced to deal with in 2011.

2.  Only an idiot — and I’m real sorry to the millions of idiots out there — tweet whether or not they just brushed their teeth or had the best Mr. Pibb of their life or had an irregular bowel movement.  How vain must someone to be to want to share all elements of their life… 140 characters at a time? 

3.  Only a real idiot’s idiot would actually spend more than 30 seconds a day reading Twitter.  Do you really care what Jim Dunaway is doing or where he’s doing it?  Does your life really depend on knowing who’s attending a Lakers-Suns game on a Wednesday night?  Yeesh.  And I thought I led a pointless existence.

4.  Oh, yeah.  You can follow at Twitter by clicking right here.  I mean, hey, if you’re going to waste your time on Twitter…



Where did I deny laptops or what his father did? How many players have been arrested at Florida? Was Cam the only bad apple? Should he still be paying for what he did two schools ago, or is he making the most of the second chance Auburn gave him?

A quick Google search showed about 4,598 news articles on Cam in 2010. That's a lot of page views and ads served. Controversy is the bedrock foundation of sportsblog "journalism." Controversy itself is your dog in the fight.



I love folks who don't read the story but comment anyway. If you look at the story, you'll see that I write PART of the controversy surrounding Newton is nonsense... but MOST of it traces back to him and his father. At this point, if you'd like to deny that he ever got in trouble with a laptop at Florida or that his father ever asked for money (even though he's admitted that)... well, it's your decision to bury your head in the sand. But I think most objective folks who don't have a dog in the fight -- and I've been called a Newton "apologist" at times -- realize that Newton equals Great Play AND Bad News. I can't imagine a fan wanting him and all the bad press that follows him to play for their team. Not at this point.

If I were an Auburn fan, I'd be rooting hard for him on Monday. And then I'd be rooting that he goes to the pros and nothing bad ever comes out about his time on The Plains a la Reggie Bush.

As for making a living off Cam Newton, I believe I just said I hope he goes pro. He may be good for readership, but personally, I'd rather not deal with any more off-field stories involving him.



Cam Newton should leave because it causes hysteria for fans of other schools? Auburn fans should want him to leave? Have you absolutely lost your mind? He should leave if only he wants to go pro, not because biased fans of other schools don't like him. Websites, bloggers, sportswriters make their living off of Cam Newton.


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