- Associated Press - Friday, November 5, 2010

AUBURN, ALA. (AP) - Auburn quarterback Cam Newton says he “didn’t do anything wrong” amid allegations that a man tried to secure payment from Mississippi State during the Heisman Trophy hopeful’s recruitment.

Newton said Friday just before stepping on the bus to the team’s hotel in Montgomery ahead of Saturday’s game with Chattanooga that he’s “sure the smoke will settle.” He says he’s holding up just fine, that he’s had “worse days.”

A person familiar with the situation tells The Associated Press that Auburn has had “no contact whatsoever” with Kenny Rogers. The former Mississippi State player has been identified by ESPN.com, citing unidentified people, as the person soliciting payment from that school.

The person tells AP that Newton’s eligibility “has never been in jeopardy.”

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) _ Auburn has had “no contact whatsoever” with a man who allegedly tried to secure payment from Mississippi State during the recruitment of Tigers quarterback and Heisman Trophy hopeful Cam Newton, according to a person familiar with the situation.

The NCAA is reviewing the recruitment of Newton, but Auburn has not received a letter of inquiry, the person told The Associated Press on Friday on condition of anonymity because the person was not authorized to comment publicly.

Cam’s eligibility has at no point been in jeopardy and he will play Saturday” for the third-ranked Tigers against Chattanooga, the person said.

Newton, who started his career at Florida, has been one of college football’s biggest sensations since transferring from Blinn Junior College in Texas. He has led the Tigers (9-0) to national title contention, accounting for a nation’s-best 30 touchdowns. He leads the Southeastern Conference in rushing.

Former Mississippi State player John Bond has said an ex-teammate _ reported by ESPN.com, citing unidentified people, as Kenny Rogers _ was soliciting payment during Newton’s recruitment by that school last season.

Bond said he reported the conversation with the former teammate to then-Mississippi State athletic director Greg Byrne.

“He told me that Cam Newton wanted to play at Mississippi State, but that a specified payment would have to be made,” Bond said in a statement on Thursday.

Byrne, who is now at Arizona, declined comment when reached by AP on Friday.

As for Newton’s current school, the person told AP, “There has been no contact whatsoever between Rogers and anyone associated with Auburn.”

Rogers has a company called Elite Football Preparation, which holds camps in Alabama, Chicago and Mississippi, and matches football prospects with colleges. Calls to the company have gone unanswered.

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