What is it they say about laughing last?

June 16, 2011 — Fallout from the long-running Cam Newton saga continues as multiple sources report punitive action being taken as a result of reporting on Newton’s recruitment. According to reliable sources it appears that if double secret sanctions are not already in place the governing body is closely monitoring the situation and could be considering a course of action which may include behavior modification.

Chuck and Chernoff of Atlanta’s 680 The Fan and Mike Leach of Sirius/XM’s College Sports Nation both reported  today that one of the prime offenders in the Newton odyssey is currently under a monitoring policy as a result of reports that aired regarding Newton during the 2010 football season.

So who’s in trouble?  Is it Cecil Newton, Cam’s father, the man pilloried from coast to coast due to his reported discussions with Mississippi State?  Is Cam Newton himself under greater scrutiny?  Is Mississippi State about to be tagged?  Is the hammer swinging at Auburn?

Before the Auburn detractors wet their pants in spasms of unbridled joy, here’s a dash of ice cold water:  ESPN college football reporter Joe Schad is the one feeling the lash.

It’s about time.

According to reliable sources (and we bet even Schad would acknowledge the delicious irony in that statement) ESPN is now keeping close watch over  Schad  due to the breathless, poorly sourced, highly predjudicial mud he flung at Newton and his family during his coverage of allegations against Auburn’s Heisman Trophy winning quarterback.

Several of Schad’s more sensational efforts failed to pass the most basic tests of credibility and he also jumped out on at least one completely unsubstantiated limb that snapped under the weight of truth.

The feeding frenzy that surrounded Newton and Auburn was much less an exercise in credible journalism than it was a chum-strewing tabloid free-for-all in which rumor, supposition, innuendo and falsehood masqueraded as fact.  Schad was chief among the muckrakers and if sourced reports are accurate, he certainly deserves the shorter leash.

Schad’s “jump on the bandwagon” sensationalism in regard to Newton certainly isn’t the first time he’s been criticized for journalistic blundering, but this time sources say his employer took notice.

For all the other programs who might one day find themselves under Schad’s cloud of speculation, that’s a good thing.

Hopefully the World Wide Leader in Sports is finally taking the lead in integrity in sports journalism.


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