Former MSU beat writer and blog friend Brandon Marcello, who now covers Auburn for AL.com, got a chance to sit down with former Auburn coach Gene Chizik yesterday to talk with Chizik about his time at Auburn. Gene, who is currently off the football coaching circuit and I'm sure angling for a job in 2014, was very public relations-ish in his talk with Marcello -- defending his time in Auburn, which ultimately totals to one year and one national championship.
And anybody who follows college football even half-way knows the rumors (and that's all they've been proven to be) that surrounded that 2010 team -- led by Cam Newton, who was at the center of a year-long scandal/investigation that never amounted to any violations or penalties for the school.
So it comes as no surprise to anyone that Chizik -- again, doing his best politician impression -- vehemently defended the integrity of that 2010 Auburn season, even going as far to say that the allegations of Cam Newton's father's dealings with MSU led to assumptions about potential allegations with Auburn as well. Here's exactly what Chizik told Marcello:
"So, how that became a Mississippi State issue, and then all the sudden it was assumed - and there were accusations out there - well, if something happened there, it had to have happened here, I don't see the logic in it," Chizik said. "Because obviously they left and found that there was nothing there."
Now, it's plenty to clear to everyone who has followed this mess that the dead horse has long since been beaten to death ten times over. But I just want to address one issue with the above statement, and that is Gene Chizik's use of the word "logic." In Chizik's statement given to AL.com, he says that he doesn't see logic in assuming that Auburn was involved with Cecil Newton -- Cam's father, who admitted to soliciting Cam to MSU for cash -- just because MSU was involved with him. Let's repeat that: Gene Chizik believes that Cecil Newton asked one school for money for Cam's signature -- a school that Cam admitted he wanted to play for -- but he did not ask the school that Cam ultimately played for for money. You see, Gene, logic, by definition, means "reasoning conducted or assessed according to strict principles of validity." Therefore, but using logic, one can deduce that it's a valid assumption that Cecil asked Auburn for money for Cam if he did the same for Cam to play at MSU. So, yeah, that word isn't used right there.
Also, we are talking about an NCAA enforcement staff that was handed the smoking gun against Miami and still found a way to completely botch the investigation. So the whole "they came and found nothing" defense really doesn't prop up to well right about now sir.
Now, what is the point of this diatribe, you ask? There isn't one. I'm not setting out to be the next roopstigo.com (but if I did, I'd dang sure get a better site name). I'm not trying to singlehandedly prove Auburn's guilt. This, to me, isn't even about Auburn. I've long since made peace with the fact that Cam went to school there, not here, and was a phenomenal player, the likes of which the SEC has not seen since. I've made peace with the fact that MSU had essentially the same supporting cast that Auburn did that year, and that one great player could have seen our season parallel the results that Auburn experienced in 2010. I'm not trying to take away what was one of the most fun seasons to watch in recent NCAA football history.
My issue is with Gene Chizik, and his blatant denial of any wrongdoing by himself or any member of his staff with regards to the Newton situation. If you want to sell me a story, Gene, you might want to not come off as a snake oil salesman. You might not want to use big words like "logic", because if I apply logic to a scenario such as the one you are discussing, then all conclusions point to something happening there. Gene can stand on a soapbox and point his finger towards Starkville all-day if he wants to, but in the end, anyone who uses logic is still going to know that you don't shop goods in one market and then give them away for free in another.