A FOXSports.com report by Thayer Evans on Monday night said Auburn quarterback Cam Newton cheated twice at Florida before deciding to transfer to Blinn College. Auburn has defended its quarterback ferociously with coach Gene Chizik calling the allegations “garbage.” Besides the allegations, which now number two in less than a week for the Heisman Trophy candidate, Newton defenders are trying to distract the issue by pointing out that Newton’s private academic records have been leaked. They wonder where the information comes from given that the disclosure of such information would be a violation of Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
A report by Auburn Undercover, a member of the 247 Sports Network, apparently says the leak comes from Mississippi State head coach Dan Mullen. Paul Finebaum’s twitter passes along the details from AuburnUndercover.com’s report: “Source for the latest academic fraud controversy swirling around Cam Newton originated in Starkville.’ … Per AuburnUndercover Source “Mullen had axe to grind. He believes he’d be undefeated & playing for an SEC Champ. if Newton had gone to MSU. … Ron Sanders: five sources say Dan Mullen is the source of the Cam Newton allegations of academic issues.”
Many people speculated that the leak came from Florida, but it’s quite possible that the source emanated from Starkville. Dan Mullen was the offensive coordinator at Florida while Newton was there so it’s likely he knew about the cheating issues. Additionally, as a school with a legitimate academic interest in Newton (Mississippi State recruited him), they could have had access to his academic records under the law’s provisions. A question, to a lesser extent, is whether Mullen knew about Newton cheating at Florida, and the larger question is whether or not he leaked the story.
One thing that must be kept in mind is that if Newton hadn’t stolen another student’s paper and changed the name on it we wouldn’t have any story to discuss. The responsibility begins with Newton if it in fact is true.Google+