MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - The NCAA is issuing a statement regarding comments made by columnist Danny Sheridan, who claims he was provided the name of the person the NCAA is investigating for paying Cam Newton to play at Auburn University.
Sheridan said a source within the NCAA provided him with the name of a 'bagman', and initially said he would release the name to the public via the Paul Finebaum radio show. Sheridan later appeared on the show, but declined to release the name after consulting with an attorney.
The NCAA issued this statement after meeting with Sheridan:
"Danny Sheridan continues to make vague, unsubstantiated claims without backing them up with proof. Contrary to his claims of having an inside source with details on the Auburn investigation, the NCAA has not provided information to Sheridan or anyone else. As a matter of due diligence, the NCAA spoke with Sheridan this week to determine if he had any facts pertaining to the investigation. Sheridan, however, did not provide any information to the enforcement staff and certainly did not provide a name. Instead, he unsuccessfully attempted to gather information for his own use."
Cam Newton's father has admitted to attempts at selling his son's athletic abilities to Mississippi State, though Newton never attended the university. He instead attended Auburn University.
No evidence, to date, has implicated Auburn University in any violations of NCAA rules in its recruitment of Newton, who led the Auburn Tigers football team to a BCS National Championship in his only year on the roster.
He later signed with the Carolina Panthers in the first round of the NFL Draft.