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Newton Wins Heisman in Landslide Vote 28

Posted: December 11, 2010, 11:06 PM ; Updated: December 13, 2010, 2:14 PM

NEW YORK (AP) -- Cam Newton won the Heisman Trophy -- as if there was any doubt.

Whether he gets to keep it is still to be determined.

Auburn's hulking quarterback brushed off an NCAA investigation of his recruitment as he did so many tacklers this season and captured college football's biggest individual award Saturday night in a landslide vote.

The third player from Auburn to win the Heisman, Newton received 729 first-place votes and outpointed runner-up Andrew Luck of Stanford by 1,184 points.

"Honestly, it's a dream come true for me, something every child has a dream (about) that plays the sport of football, and I'm living testimony that anything is possible," Newton said.

Oregon running back LaMichael James was third, followed by Boise State quarterback Kellen Moore, the other finalist.

Newton didn't look a bit surprised when his name was announced inside the Best Buy Theater in Times Square. A wide smile spread across his face and he dropped his head.

After exchanging hugs and handshakes with the other finalists, he and his mother, Jackie, shared a long embrace. His dad was not there.

When he reached the podium, he had to steady himself.

"Oh my God," he whispered as he reached into his inside jacket packet to pull out his speech.

On the field and off, Newton has been the story of the college football season. He's carried the top-ranked Tigers to the BCS national championship game against No. 2 Oregon, running and passing over opponents who looked helpless trying to stop him. But his story is stained: Recently, the NCAA determined his father tried to peddle him to Mississippi State for cash.

Not even that ruling stopped Newton. The NCAA cleared him to play before the Southeastern Conference title game because it found no evidence that he or Auburn knew about Cecil Newton's pay-for-play scheme. It also suggested that it was still investigating, as were the FBI and the Mississippi secretary of state's office. Cam Newton has denied any wrongdoing.

Still, it invites speculation that the newest Heisman winner could perhaps be heading down the same path as Reggie Bush, who returned his trophy three months ago after the NCAA ruled that he and his family received cash and gifts while he was at Southern California.

Asked about the possibility during his news conference, Newton said: "Two letters for you my friend - No."

To be eligible for the Heisman, a player must be in good standing with the NCAA. And for most of November, that was unclear following claims by a Mississippi State booster who said Newton's father tried to get the Bulldogs to pay $180,000 for his son to play for them.

The NCAA didn't punish Cam Newton but did say Cecil Newton's access to Auburn athletics would have to be limited.

Cecil Newton did not attend the Heisman ceremony. In a statement released by his lawyer earlier in the week, he said his presence could "rob Cam and the event of a sacred moment."

All the uncertainty didn't keep voters from making Newton an overwhelming choice - he received the sixth most first-place votes and the third highest percentage of first-place votes. Though 105 voters among the 886 who returned ballots chose not to list him among their three selections.

"Obviously, like most people, I have my suspicions, but I don't think it's my position to pretend to know what is happening with the NCAA investigation," said voter Stewart Mandel of SI.com.

It was impossible to argue against his performance.

Blending a linebacker's body with a tailback's speed and quickness, the 6-foot-6, 250-pounder from Georgia has guided Auburn to a perfect season. His numbers are off the charts: an SEC-best 1,409 yards rushing with 21 touchdowns, and 2,589 yards passing and 28 TD passes. He's the first SEC player to run for at least 1,000 yards and pass for at least 2,000 in the same season.

Early in the season, Auburn shredded defenses with Newton on the ground. Working out of offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn's spread attack, he ran for at least 176 yards in four straight SEC games. Not even Bo Jackson, the last Auburn player to win the Heisman, did that.

As the season wore on and opponents focused on stopping Newton from running wild, he started beating them with his arm.

Newton threw 15 touchdown passes and only one interception in the final five games, saving maybe his best performance for last. In a 56-17 victory over South Carolina in the SEC title game, Newton passed for 335 yards and four touchdowns and ran for 73 yards and two scores.

By mid-October, Newton was the clear Heisman front-runner and, ultimately, not even the scandal could slow his Heisman run.

But even before Newton became a star at Auburn, he made news for the wrong reasons.

Newton attended Florida out of high school and in 2007, as a freshman, served as Tim Tebow's backup.

The next season he was arrested for having a stolen laptop, which he says he bought. The charges were dropped when he completed a pretrial intervention program for first-time offenders.

He decided to transfer out of Florida in January 2009, the day after Tebow announced he would return for his senior season.

Newton has said he left because he wanted to play, but during the stream of scandalous news about him last month there also were media reports that he was facing possible discipline at Florida for academic cheating.

He spent the 2009 season at Blinn College, a two-year school in Texas, and helped it win a JUCO national championship.

When it came time to return to major college football, Newton picked Auburn over Mississippi State and coach Dan Mullen, his former position coach with the Gators. Newton has said he let his father make the decision and Cecil Newton picked Auburn because it was closer to home.

This could very well be Newton's first and last season at Auburn. He's projected as a high to middle first-round NFL draft pick.

If he is one and done, Newton's lone season as a starter could go down as one of the greatest in college football history if he also adds a national championship trophy to Auburn's display case.

Copyright 2010 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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28 Comments

this is wat i think u dont give the highsman to a player who buys a stolen lap top first off or if his dad does the pay and play trick if it dosent work for reggie watch them strip this from him right after the national chamipionship why would any one want to go to a college that the FBI is all over (smooth auburn) last but not least ROLL TIDE !!!!!!!!!!!!!

Seeing as you like Alabama, I have determined that you are biased.

cam rules but bush should get his back

powerful

You are right like Cam Poooton because he's a jerk. Diving when not needed to.

I don't know, but he is a darn good QB, but what about the RB from Oregon

huh?

auburn got lucky this entire season with close wins but cam newton is a pretty good quaterback.

and avoiding the fbi till christmas

you are right about Auburn`s close season but the last game was dom-on-a-tion!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Football is for loosers

Dude come on football is the the most awesome sport in history. You may play soccer and that is the worst sport of all sports.

I want to say so many things to you right now but they won't post this comment if I say those things on here. Why are you reading a football article in the first place you... never mind

Two things: 1. Football is the best sport god created and 2, WHY THE HECK WOULD YOU POST SOMTHING LIKE THIS ON A BLOG FOR FOOTBALL!!! P.S u r a loser if you don't like football.

What?!

Here is my opinion. Yes, the Heisman Trophy is awarded to the best on-field performer. Cam Newton was the obvious choice. He is amazing, but so was Reggie Bush. This is the same situation that Reggie Bush was just in. In 2006, he WAS the best on-field performer, but he returned it once the allegations started. This is the same thing. In my opinion, Cam Newton should either give back the Heisman or Bush should get his back.

BE QUIET,ALABAMA FANS AND AUBURN-HATERS!Cam deserved that Heisman.49 TD.4-9!You heard me!And that's not all!Two games with 5 TD and one with six!He leads the SEC in rushing too!Maxwell Award,Davy O'Brien award...All I'm trying to say is that you Auburn-haters are making a pretty ridiculous argument.

You guys are so stupid. Cam Newton was clearly the best player in college fooball this year. Just becase his father asked Miss. St. for money doesn't diminish his performances on the field. If I had the power, I would have payed him to come play for my school.

yayyyyyyyyyyyyy!

He won by a landslide but Cam and Auburn will lose to Oregon

Cam won by landslide but they are going to lose to Oregon.

Like father like son

OMG ppl! why did u pick someone whose father iz a crimanal?

this is football, not a soap opera.

more like CAM POOOTON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

He is trying to be sarcastic goalie guy.

you are right he is a jerk.

No, actually its Cam Newton.

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