Thursday, March 3, 2011

AUBurgeddon: 97.7 The Zone releases statement regarding “The Tapes”

Give 97.7 The Zone some credit here for behaving like a responsible news organization. The station has released a one-page statement regarding its plans to air recordings said to be in the possession of former Mississippi State Quarterback and booster, John Bond. Bond is the individual who first alerted Mississippi State compliance officials of an alleged pay-for-play scheme concocted by by Cecil Newton, the father of then Blinn Community College Quarterback Cam Newton.

Snapshot of the statement:

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During last night’s broadcast of the “Scottie W. and Redfish Show,” John Bond told host told Scott Moore that he would release a segment of one of the recordings, saying “it’ll give 'em something to talk about, I guarantee you.”

The Zone says, “not so fast, my friend.”

Scott Moore has been the center of a media and internet firestorm the last two weeks, after  he first announced on the air that he had heard some of the recordings. Moore has said that they incriminated Cecil Newton, implicated the Universities of Auburn and Tennessee and that they provided evidence that Cam Newton knew of his father’s alleged dealings.

Moore’s statements have divided the college sports world into three distinct camps.  One that remains skeptical, yet highly entertained; a second that heralds him as a white-hatted hero; a third that denounces him as a lying snake with a vendetta.

Put me squarely in the first category.

As reported here yesterday, a copy of what is purported to be one of these recordings went viral on teh innerwebs. The clearinghouse website AuburnGate.com posted the original recording and several digitally “cleaned up” versions of the recording.

This is not a “non-story,” sports fans. Within a few short hours of AG’s posting, copies of the recording were being played from coast to coast and at fan sites for programs like Texas A&M and Ohio State. It means that the average college football fan is keenly interested.

The sports world is still tuned into this story and eagerly gobbles up the next tidbit.

The Zone’s statement also shows that cool heads are in charge and that the recordings that hit its airwaves will be authentic. We have no idea exactly who’s voices were on the recording that circulated yesterday, nor do we have any idea of its authenticity.

Those uncertainties aren’t likely to be in place next time, if there is a next time.

Exit Question: Why has no one tried playing the tape backwards?  I did that yesterday and I could have sworn I heard Cecil say: “FREE HARVEY UPDYKE!”

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