Mississippi State did what it was supposed to do

 I’m not sure why, but a big deal was made yesterday when Mississippi State released a statement saying that it contacted the SEC office in January 2010 with information it had about the recruiting of Cameron Newton. Some thoughts here:

No. 1: Mississippi State was following the rules established by the Southeastern Conference. Any member school with information that NCAA rules may have been broken–by its institution or another institution–has the obligation to turn that information over to the conference office. Failure to do so is in itself a violation of SEC rules. So if it had sat on the information and not turned it in, Mississippi State would have had a problem.

No. 2: When Mississippi State first contacted the SEC the information was very general and lacked specifics. My understanding is that the initial contact between Mississippi State and the SEC on this matter was a very informal one. It was along the lines of “Hey, this happened and we thought you should know about it.” It wasn’t a formal report.  Logically, the SEC office wanted more information, including interviews with the staff people at Mississippi State who were involved before it could move forward. For example: The initial information presented to the SEC by Mississippi State did not include the names of John Bond and Kenny Rogers, whose alleged conversation back in December started this mess.

3. That additional information, I have been told, was not immediately forthcoming. Mississippi State confirms this in its statement: “Due to MSU dealing with ongoing and time-consuming eligibility isues in the winter and spring of 2010, the specific SEC request went unfilled. Some additional information was provided to the SEC during July of 2010.” Okay. So now we have the time line that answers the Auburn fans as to WHY this is coming out now. The SEC did not have the information it needed to move forward with the NCAA until this summer.

4. So the question now is WHY did it take until July of 2010 for the SEC to get the additional information it needed from Mississippi State? In its statement the school said it was busy with other eligibility issues not related to football. This begs for some clarification from both Mississippi State and the SEC. The SEC, I’ll remind you, is not an investigative body. It gathers facts, shares its findings with the institutions involved, and then forwards them on to the NCAA to be examined. There could be an entirely logical explanation for this timeline. Did Mississippi State drag its feet because it didn’t want to get that involved? Did the SEC not press as hard as it should have to get the information? Or is this timeline consistent with how long these things take?  Mississippi State jumped out there with its version of the events on Wednesday because I’m sure it was getting hammered from a lot of different directions. Does the SEC respond? I’m not sure it can or would want to other than to say that what happened is consistent with its policies.

5. Please, spare me the conspiracy theories. I love you guys (and you know who you are) but nobody can dream up conspiracy theories like an SEC football fan. Things don’t just happen in the SEC. They are always part of a huge Master Plan to put the screws to your school–especially when it is having a good year. 

They only drag the discussion of this topic down to an even lower level, which I’m not sure is possible at this point. There has been some good reporting on this story and there has been some downright lousy reporting on this story. There have been people who call themselves reporters who  have taken an ounce of fact and extrapolated it into a five pounds of rampant and unfounded speculation. Conclusions have been reached from alleged facts that are not in evidence. At times it has been damned embarrassing for those of us who do this for a living.

 Why? Because they know you’ll read it and react to it. It moves the needle and creates the web hits. Some of the discussion in the blogosphere has raised important questions and has been really thought provoking. But the vast majority of the discourse on the Cameron Newton case has been several notches below a cafeteria food fight.

Understand that regardless of how the Cameron Newton story is resolved,  there will no winners.  The biggest loser of all is those of us who love college football and still feel that, with all of its warts, it is a worthwhile enterprise that is a lot more good than bad. For the people who care about the game, this has been a very tough week.

Please follow me on Twitter:

www.twitter.com/MrCFB

445 comments Add your comment

BAMA dude

November 11th, 2010
4:54 pm

BAMA dude

November 11th, 2010
4:56 pm

Driving Ms Dooley

November 11th, 2010
4:28 pm
Ok, I didn’t realize that Kenny Rogers was ANOTHER MSU ALUM WHO HAS CHANGED HIS STORY AND HAS NO IDEA WHAT WENT ON AT AUBURN.

It doesn’t matter what went on at Auburn. If Cam or Cecil used Rogers to try to get money then Cam is ineligible due to an agent relationship. Period. Auburn vacates every game Cam played in.

blazer

November 11th, 2010
4:57 pm

a j greene pushes off every time too!!

Don Meredith

November 11th, 2010
4:59 pm

Turn out the lights Cam, the parties over

Poker Face

November 11th, 2010
5:01 pm

ESPN called their bluff and the SEC went ALL IN on Cam. Can the NCAA put a whole conference on probation?

SEC Fan

November 11th, 2010
5:01 pm

@blazer

If he’d gone to Auburn, he could afford to buy a new starter. Then he would have to push off.

SEC Fan

November 11th, 2010
5:02 pm

wouldn’t have to…

KR

November 11th, 2010
5:03 pm

BAMA dude: it matters to Auburn alums. We understand that this season may be vacated based on what may end up being proven, but the bigger issue for us is whether or not our University was involved in wrongdoing.

If the answer is yes, then the President, AD and Football coach will need to be held accountable. If it is a booster, then we need to cut ties with that booster and tighten up our activities. If it is contained to the player involved or his family, then we have to do a better job of screening our prospective scholarship recipients.

To Auburn alums, it about way more than just this season.

sunny purdue

November 11th, 2010
5:03 pm

Shouldn’t Schlabach ( the weasel) be beaten until he is unconscious for starting all this?

SEC Fan

November 11th, 2010
5:04 pm

@KR

You might want to start with finally getting Pat Dye out of the football program.

BAMA dude

November 11th, 2010
5:07 pm

KR, I appreciate that point. I was responding to those who seem to think that this season won’t be affected. The NCAA told the Birmingham News that a player asking for money to play is an NCAA violation in and of itself. Not for Auburn, obviously, unless Auburn paid him. It would just be an eligibility issue.

NCAA COI

November 11th, 2010
5:07 pm

“a spokesman said: “Generally speaking, if a third party is marketing a student-athlete, there could be potential agent violations. Under NCAA rules, it doesn’t matter what you call yourself or how you are compensated, the actions are what triggers agent violation rules.”

DADDY just cost Cammy his eligibility, and Auburn thier season.

KR

November 11th, 2010
5:10 pm

SEC Fan: what is it you think Pat Dye does for the Auburn football program?

Does anyone else find this piece of the Rogers interview cause for concern, or is it just me?

Rogers said Cecil Newton asked him, “What do you think is going to happen? Do you think it (the deal) is going to go through?”

Rogers said he told Newton, “I’ll call Bill Bell.”

Bell is a former teammate of Rogers at Mississippi State. Bell is the president of Bel-Mac Roofing in Santa Rosa, Fla.

Rogers said he left a message for Bell that Sunday. Why?

“If somebody’s asking for that kind of money, I don’t have that kind of money,” Rogers said. “I called somebody I was close to to see if he knew anybody.”

BAMA dude

November 11th, 2010
5:12 pm

It is important to note that Rogers had his attorney next to him for this interview. Chances are that he lied before to ESPN but has now gotten advice to come clean.

Cheating Again

November 11th, 2010
5:16 pm

Alabama and Auburn—always cheating in football to win. It never ends in that backward state. Why don’t they play by the same rules as other teams for once, and quit paying players?

Not So Fast

November 11th, 2010
5:17 pm

Hey BAMA dude:

If Cecil Newton is guilty of the actions he has been accused of his son lost his eligibility and any victories will be vacated.

AJ's Jersey

November 11th, 2010
5:19 pm

Okay, can someone explain something to me here. AJ was suspended for 4 games while the ncaa investigated Jersey gate. Why in the world is Cam not sitting on the sidelines while the NCAA gathers its stuff?

BAMA dude

November 11th, 2010
5:19 pm

Absolutely, NSF. Dan Wetzel just tweeted an NCAA rule that states this as a major violation. Majors are bad news.

BAMA dude

November 11th, 2010
5:21 pm

AJ’s Jersey

November 11th, 2010
5:19 pm
Okay, can someone explain something to me here. AJ was suspended for 4 games while the ncaa investigated Jersey gate. Why in the world is Cam not sitting on the sidelines while the NCAA gathers its stuff?

Because UGA was smart about it. The NCAA doesn’t suspend for things like this, they simply rule on eligibility. As soon as UGA found out about the allegations they pulled AJ pending the investigation. Auburn was notified of the investigation in July but decided to roll the dice and play him anyway. Not their smartest move if these allegations are true.

KR

November 11th, 2010
5:26 pm

AJ’s Jersey

November 11th, 2010
5:19 pm
Okay, can someone explain something to me here. AJ was suspended for 4 games while the ncaa investigated Jersey gate. Why in the world is Cam not sitting on the sidelines while the NCAA gathers its stuff?

BAMA dude is right. Also, AJ probably told his coaches what he did so they knew some type of suspension was coming. UGA voluntarily offered up 2 games but the NCAA required 4.

Auburn coaches probably asked Cam about this and he denied it. They believed him and chose to play him. The pending NCAA investigation will no doubt point out how smart or dumb that may have been.

justthefacts

November 11th, 2010
5:39 pm

bamadude,You nailed it! Rogers may have told a lie last week? But when this FBI stuff starts going on he tells the truth.Nobody going to lie to the feds because that would be crazy! I mean the heck with football you want to avoid jail.

bamaguy

November 11th, 2010
5:42 pm

If some Auburn alum or supporter ends up being guilty of something (I don’t think any member of the Athletic Department did anything wrong) I can only hope and pray it was Bobby Louder, talk about Karma!

BAMA dude

November 11th, 2010
5:43 pm

Wonder if Trisha will be on here soon spouting off about there being no evidence?

bamaguy

November 11th, 2010
5:45 pm

And as far as I am concerned “Bishop” Newton has the same level of credibility as “Bishop” Long.

Gatorman

November 11th, 2010
6:05 pm

If the dastardly deed was done, there will be a paper trail. Stay tuned for NCAA storm troopers as they will get to the truth. Newton will not receive the Heisman trophy and Auburn may have to forfeit the entire season. If the coach and AD were knowledgeable of what took place, there will be a whole new staff next year, and well indirectly Auburn will get their version of the death penalty. If would easily take 5-10 years to rebuild the program, but only if the payoff took place.

dap01

November 11th, 2010
6:16 pm

The SEC will probably blame George Bush.

TrishaDishaWarEagle

November 11th, 2010
6:18 pm

Coach Chizek just said that Cam WILL play on Saturday.

Cam IS eligible. He WILL play.

Auburn WILL beat the Dawgs and the Bummers!!!

WAR CAM EAGLE!!!

I am unanimous in that.

November 11th, 2010
6:24 pm

Cheating Again

November 11th, 2010
5:16 pm

Alabama and Auburn—always cheating in football to win. It never ends in that backward state. Why don’t they play by the same rules as other teams for once, and quit paying players?

Hmmm…

Alabama’s problems made their way into Tuscaloosa on the back of a Tennessee kid. Auburn’s problems rode in from Georgia. Sounds like the state of Alabama just needs to keep it down home.

dap01

November 11th, 2010
6:25 pm

Auburn may win the remaining of the games this year, but long after Computer CAM is gone, Auburn will be suffering with the consequences. (Reggie Bush/USC)

Saint Simons

November 11th, 2010
6:26 pm

I am a SWM looking for SWM. Like going out or staying home for a cozy evening.

IT IS WHAT IT IS

November 11th, 2010
6:34 pm

The NCAA and the associated universities get whatever they deserve. Billions of dollars are made off these kids, yet they still want to pretend big-time college sports are “amatuer”. Cam will go on and make millions, while Auburn may suffer later on. GOOD!

I am unanimous in that.

November 11th, 2010
6:42 pm

@IT IS WHAT IT IS

Is that you Charles?

I am unanimous in that.

November 11th, 2010
6:51 pm

But seriously. Only the athletes are ‘amateur’. Everyone understands that… or at least, they should. That’s the way it’s always been. That’s the way Olympic Athletics were, back when they mattered. The schools make money from the games – especially now that television revenue is involved. It can be argued that the athletes deserve to ‘wet their beaks’ on that huge pool of money, but there are plenty of good counter-arguments as well.

The money is the root of all of the problems with collegiate sports, but what can be done about it?

Cam Watch

November 11th, 2010
6:57 pm

My work here is done. Nothing more to watch. Move along.

Delbert D.

November 11th, 2010
7:05 pm

Here is what you should read: “How Broken Must College Football Be to Fix It?”

An excerpt of the article: “The fact is, the commerce in running backs and other valuable assets is an annual and regular proposition — foisted on the country by that assemblage called the National Collegiate Athletic Association.”

Today, New York Times web site, by George Vecsey.

NCAA COPS

November 11th, 2010
8:04 pm

Cheating again,

What was that about AU and Bama cheating? I see Georgia right up there tied for 4th with most major NCAA infractions cases with 6. Funny but I don’t see the univ of Alabama in there.

CHEATING HALL OF FAME THE TOP 29 NCAA DIVISION I TEAMS IN TERMS OF ALL-TIME MAJOR INFRACTIONS CASES.

Source is NCAA.ORG (ncaa legistlative database of major infractions cases)

1. Arizona state 8
2. SMU 8
3. Auburn, Minnesota, Oklahoma, Texas A&M, Whichita State, and Wisconsin all with 7 each.
4. Cal, FSU, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Kansas State, Kentucky, Memphis, and UCLA with 6 major cases each.
5. Baylor, Cincinatti, Colorado, Miami, Fl., Michigan State, Mississippi State, NC State, Texas-Pan American, USC, UTEP, Washington, and West Virginia all with 5 major infractions cases each.

Scottie

November 11th, 2010
9:53 pm

When Georgia players flooded the field against Floida, penalties galore.

When Florida players flooded the field in overtime recently against Georgia, no penalties.

Add in the refs that got suspended after the Georgia/LSU game, amount of penalties called on Georgia in 2008/2009, easy to see somebody up high in the SEC is not pro-georgia.

Miles

November 12th, 2010
12:23 am

Cut to the chase…Cam Newton is a SCUMBAG!

[...] TigersDawg SportsUrban Meyer denies leaking Cam Newton academic informationPalm Beach Post (blog)Mississippi State did what it was supposed to doAtlanta Journal Constitution (blog)MrSEC -msnbc.com -Team Speed Killsall 2,774 news [...]

Cornu Hull

November 12th, 2010
7:12 am

When a father says he is “looking for something more”, it does not nesessarily mean money or material things. Yeah, you can say that phrase and the world thinks that obviously is what you’re referring to, because that’s the way our society is. Giving the father the benefit of the doubt there are numerous references other than money & material stuff the elder Newton could want for his son. Things that break no rules. If it plays out that Auburn and elder Newton broke rules of integrity, THROW THE BOOK AT THEM!

GT BABY

November 12th, 2010
12:22 pm

GT BABY

November 12th, 2010
12:25 pm

UGA=Worse fan base ever!

GT BABY

November 12th, 2010
12:25 pm

Jason- Biggest cry baby B&^%ch I’ve ever seen!

GT BABY

November 12th, 2010
12:27 pm

Vegas doesnt like us whhhhhaaaa whhhaaaaa….cry me a river d-bag!

GT BABY

November 12th, 2010
12:28 pm

Have Georgia fans ever stopped to think about their sorry coaching and thug players might be the reason we all say 1980 proudly?