AUBURN, AL - Following the NCAA's ruling Wednesday on Auburn quarterback Cameron Newton's eligibility, Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs issued a statement to Auburn Ticket Holders. This is what it said.
Dear Auburn Family,
I wanted to use this forum to personally share a statement from me that was released to the media earlier today concerning Cam Newton's eligibility. I felt that it was important to send this statement directly to you in light of the many reports in recent weeks.
The following statement from me was included in a joint press release with the NCAA:
"We are pleased that the NCAA has agreed with our position that Cam Newton has been and continues to be eligible to play football at Auburn University. We appreciate the diligence and professionalism of the NCAA in its handling of this matter."
The joint press release also included the following statement from Kevin Lennon, the NCAA's vice president for academic and membership affairs:
"In determining how a violation impacts a student-athlete's eligibility, we must consider the young person's responsibility. Based on the information available to the reinstatement staff at this time, we do not have sufficient evidence that Cam Newton or anyone from Auburn was aware of this activity, which led to his reinstatement. From a student-athlete reinstatement perspective, Auburn University met its obligation under NCAA bylaw 14.11.1. Under this threshold, the student-athlete has not participated while ineligible."
Some of you have been frustrated by our inability to comment publicly on this matter in recent weeks and by the absence of factual information amidst the firestorm of reports. Your frustration is understandable. The Auburn Athletics Department declined to comment on these recent reports out of respect for the process. To do otherwise would not have been in Auburn's best interest or in the best interest of our student-athletes, and we hope you understand that.
Know that we will always act with character and integrity and that we will always do what is best for Auburn University. That has been and will continue to be the case.
The support of the Auburn Family throughout this remarkable season has been incredible. The gameday experience and atmosphere at Jordan-Hare Stadium was the best it has ever been. Your spirit and passion mean more to those young men who play for Auburn than you will ever know. I thank you for that.
I am proud of the character and class that Cam Newton, his teammates, Coach Chizik and his entire staff have shown in recent weeks and throughout the year. I know that you are equally proud of this very special team, and that we can count on the Auburn Family to rally around them as we prepare to go to Atlanta and play for the Southeastern Conference championship.
God Bless and War Eagle!