An emotional Auburn coach Gene Chizik sternly told the media Tuesday during his weekly news conference that he wasn’t taking one question about any of the Cam Newton allegations.
That’s after spending more than four minutes defending his star quarterback and calling the latest FOXSports.com report that Newton was caught cheating multiple times at Florida “pure garbage.”
Last week, ESPN.com reported that a man claiming to represent the Newton family, former Mississippi State player Kenny Rogers, tried to shop Newton to Mississippi State for $180,000. Newton’s father, Cecil Newton, said the NCAA asked him within the past month to provide bank statements. Both Cecil Newton and Cam Newton have denied any wrongdoing.
The NCAA is currently investigating, but Auburn officials have been emphatic that there are no issues with Newton’s eligibility at Auburn.
“Let me tell you something: He’s the leader of the Heisman race because he deserves it. That’s fact,” Chizik said. “So distractions or whatever’s out there, whatever people want to drum up and dream up and try to distract, it is what it is and it’s not changing. Cameron’s going to be focused on playing Georgia this week. Nothing’s changed in terms of who he is and what he is. But he is like our son here, and I’ve got a problem with this, got a problem it.”
Earlier, Chizik offered an impassioned defense of Newton, who wouldn’t address the cheating allegations.
“Cameron Newton is one of the young men on our football team that has not only excelled as a tremendous athlete, he has done everything we have asked him to do since the day he stepped on campus at Auburn,” Chizik said. "So I want to make this very clear, because I'm wasting my time addressing allegations that completely, to be frank, blow my mind that they're even out there because there are federal privacy laws that dictate that these things don't even get out in public.
“But I'm standing up here on a very important week trying to defend something that quite frankly is garbage. Is there a wizard behind the curtain? I don't know. Is there one? Is there two? Are there 10? I don't know, and I don’t care. But what I do care about is coming to the defense of not only a great football player, but a great human being who comes from a great family.”