Cam Newton doesn’t need his dad’s help tonight

December 11, 2010 | Drew Forrester

Cam Newton could make it all go away tonight in New York City.

Just by doing the smart thing.

And he doesn’t need his father to help him make the right decision either.

Unlike his search for a place to play college football, Newton – the kid – can handle this one all by himself.

Newton – and you know this unless you’ve been in a cave somewhere since October – is set to win college football’s top award Saturday night when he receives the Heisman Trophy, but he’ll be clutching the award in the midst of a mammoth scandal that has already forced his father to announce he won’t attend the ceremony.

I shouldn’t have to give you the pre-show-trailer-version of what happened with Cam Newton but I will. In 30 seconds, here it is: He started at Florida, left/was dismissed amidst allegations he cheated on a test, had a run-in with the law involving a stolen computer, played at a junior college, embarked on a return to Division I football, and eventually wound up at Auburn. Oh, and his father asked Mississippi State for “somewhere around” $180,000 in exchange for his son playing football for the Bulldogs. That was before he went to Auburn, mind you.

Those are the facts.

And the other fact is, without a doubt, that Cam Newton was the best college football player in the country this year.

Slam dunk.

But he shouldn’t accept the Heisman Trophy tonight.

And if he did that, he’d instantly be a hero. And he’d forever be remembered as the guy who stared scandal in the face and admitted that taking the Heisman Trophy would do the award more harm than good.

Facts aside, and they’re damning enough as it is, there’s rampant speculation that Cam Newton knew his father, Cecil, was peddling him to the highest bidder. A Mississippi State coach said Cam Newton told him “the money at Auburn is just too good” when the quarterback informed the Bulldogs he wouldn’t be playing football for them. That’s “he-said-she-said” stuff, of course, but if it’s true and the son knew the dad had the FOR SALE sign out, that makes him as guilty as his father.

At this point, though, whether or not Cam Newton was aware of his father’s improper efforts is neither here nor there. For the record (continued)