About Atlanta’s hate for Cam Newton and the Panthers …

Atlanta native Cam Newton of the Carolina Panthers celebrates during the NFC championship against the Arizona Cardinals Sunday at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

Cam Newton of the Carolina Panthers celebrates during the NFC championship against the Arizona Cardinals Sunday at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte. (Grant Halverson / Getty Images)

Cam  Newton is an Atlanta native, led his college team (Auburn) to an SEC championship and then a national title his lone season on campus, probably is the most entertaining quarterback the NFL has seen since Michael Vick (before he jumped the rails) and now has led his team (Carolina) to the Super Bowl.

There are a number of ingredients there that should make him popular on the Atlanta sports scene, and probably does with some. But Newton also seems to be as vilified a sports figure as you’re going to find with area sports fans, particularly on social media. One numskull actually Tweeted this to me Sunday night:

Really?

Why such scorn? Here are some reasons:

• He’s not one of us! Allegiances to an athlete who was born in a city and went to a local high school (Westlake) dissipate quickly when that person leaves to play for a heated rival college of Georgia’s — first Florida, then Auburn, but that’s another story — and then play professionally for an NFC South Division rival of the Falcons (Carolina). Never go against the family, Fredo.

• He’s a crook! OK, there was that stolen laptop thing when he was a backup at Florida. That led to a suspension and prompted him to transfer to a community college in Texas. Then there was his father’s attempt to pimp young Cam’s services to the highest bidder in the SEC. (Cecil Newton reportedly told Mississippi State boosters it would take “more than a scholarship” for Newton to enroll there and we heard stories of six-figure demands.)

Newton wound up at Auburn. No evidence ever was uncovered that he or his father received cash. This all led to a messy handling of the case by the NCAA (shocker!). The NCAA suspended Newton on a Tuesday, and for only a Tuesday — Nov. 30, 2010, four days before the SEC championship against South Carolina. The reason for the suspension: Cecil Newton’s solicitation. But there was a widespread belief that Newton had gotten away with something. And then Auburn won the SEC and BCS titles and Newton won the Heisman Trophy and, well, that just made it all worse.

• He’s a showboat! Yes, soccer moms are very upset that Mr. Cam Newton has no conducted himself in a more professional manner. He dances. He points. He gloats. He smiles that big, phony, in-your-face smile. (Nice teeth, though.) But those same soccer moms wouldn’t have a problem if one of their team’s players did all that. Letter-writing soccer moms also fail to recognize that Newton picks out a child in the stands to hand a football to after every touchdown. Are Newton’s antics a bit much at times? Sure. But they’re all in fun. Every Falcons fan thought it was charming back in the days of Billy “White Shoes” Johnson’s dance. If you don’t like what Newton does, don’t let him get into the end zone. Or don’t watch.

• That team is arrogant! Yes. Young winners often are. It’s why Falcons fans will tell you the 2015 season had two highlights: 1) The 5-0 start; 2) Handing Carolina its only defeat in the 15th game. But if the Panthers’ words or antics get you that fired up, there’s probably also a bit of envy there. As in, “I wish that was my team.” Want to shut up the Panthers? Beat them? Want to stop Cam Newton from dancing? Stop him. The Falcons did. Somehow.

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270 comments
Linda Gregg
Linda Gregg

Newton's antics aren't all in fun, and there is nothing I envy about him. He's just not a professional in the true sense of the word. And, no matter what you say, the Falcons aren't a sorry team. Just look at the Pro Bowl performance by our players. Yes, I am a die hard Falcons fan, but my feelings for Cam Newton are not because of that.

T Renée Crutcher
T Renée Crutcher

Make it plain, some white people hate him. The rest of us love this hometown hero on and off the field!

Connie W. Viscarra
Connie W. Viscarra

Do not be hating Cam please. There have been many many crooked racist murderous law breaking felons in Football and basketball. At least he has his charity work and at least he is a Christian. Go cam

Alene Bennett
Alene Bennett

Be careful wishing bad things on others as there is a such thing as a boomerang effect that send it and the hate back your way times three.

Markus K. Cunningham
Markus K. Cunningham

This is obviously a Fslcons, Georgia Bulldogs Fan , who is pissed off because of his team's are sorry and their performances suck every year. Nobody from Georgia or Georgia Tech offered him a scholarship. Despite Mel Kieper,Jr's placing Cam at #9 in the NFL Draft that year, The Carolina Panthers were not stupid and picked him #1/1st round overall, was not Cam's fault. According to the NCAA'S investigation, he did nothing wrong. All the arrows are proving that you are a true "Hater". #GO_CAM

Panama Gold
Panama Gold

Ppl are so ignorant...Hope the panthers win...Sorry they dont make bandaids for feelings...#newton #panthers #superbowl #haters

Linda Burton
Linda Burton

I'm an all the way Falcons fan...but our coach and owner didn't chooes him...so yes I love me some Cam Newton..GO PANTHERS!!!

Sky Robinson
Sky Robinson

Wanting peopel injured because they showboat is what's really wrong with sports.

Rhonda Douglas
Rhonda Douglas

That is so low down to wish someone to get hurt.don't hate the player hate the game.

Deborah Harris
Deborah Harris

I REBUKE THAT REMARK IN THE NAME OF JESUS☆☆☆ CAN'T SAY SOMETHING NICE ABOUT A PERSON DON'T SAY NOTHING AT ALL ☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆

Shelia Thompson
Shelia Thompson

Too much hate in the world \U0001f60a. Just love one another

Kathy Owens Camp
Kathy Owens Camp

I don't think Atlanta hates Cam y'all just like printing the negative! We love him in the swats! His father grew up here and has plenty of classmates, family and friends who love Cams talent and confidence!

Jenoure Common
Jenoure Common

Exactly!!! Just fishing for comments. Let it be known.... Atlanta LOVES this man. We embrace ANY positive role model that our kids can look up to. Especially our African American kings. Get outta here with that mess

Randy Thrower
Randy Thrower

Cam isn't humble, but neither was Deion. He's just the best Playa on that field and he's gonna make sure you know it.

Krystal Dennis
Krystal Dennis

What you are seeing is the result of when black fathers are in the home, these young men have confidence because they know who they are, and have a strong foundation. This is why they try and take fathers out of the home and force our young men to fend for themselves.

Knolly Villaruel
Knolly Villaruel

A lot of negative people have something bad to say but do u know how hard it is or what it takes to be a professional football player more so a quarterback and be successful one think about that

Lakeisha Dixon
Lakeisha Dixon

Who would speak malice on this man? I render those words ineffective, null, void and may they drop out the sky and die. I declare he is safe and protected by the power of Jesus Christ

Kim Carr-Washington
Kim Carr-Washington

Wow, why print and continue to perpetrate this hate..we know some people hate him for reasons that lack logic, but let's stop giving them press and printing hate towards this man..it's exposed now.

Gayle Walton
Gayle Walton

There is a season and a reason for all greatness. Praise people for their success instead of blocking yours by hating their victory. I've learn if I can't be happy for another ones success then should I be entitled to success. If you can't be happy for others then your waiting period is longer...

Scott Hornibrook
Scott Hornibrook

I hate everybody in the NFC South except the Falcons, of course. ;)

Jasmine Jones
Jasmine Jones

Cam stay healthy,I wish no bad luck to anyone...

Anthony VS Havik
Anthony VS Havik

I'm a loyal Falcons fan and I don't hate Cam Newton one bit. Many people are unaware that he is a native Atlantan. Besides the Falcons may not have been in the playoffs but at least they ruined the Panthers perfect season. Even though we had a mediocre season, we did what no other team could do this season. So why hate Cam? I hope he wins it all.

Marlon T-lox Williams
Marlon T-lox Williams

Atlanta don't hate cam he's from atlanta whoever wrote this blog is making shhiiittt up

Gigi Allen
Gigi Allen

No hate here! He's my homie. Stop the drama folks!

Gigi Allen
Gigi Allen

Can we trade Matt for Cam? ❤️ my Falcons but admire Cam! 😉

Monique Lang
Monique Lang

I loved Cam Newton. Don't be jealous. Sorry birds / Atlanta Falcons.

David Petway
David Petway

I don't know anyone in atlanta rooting against him though. My sample size may be biased though, but worth looking into that discrepamcy.

Jerome Mckinney
Jerome Mckinney

Can't forget it's the south and Georgia is one of the most racist states in the Country.

Jill Ivester Smithers
Jill Ivester Smithers

I don't even understand the hate. He's the most genuine sports star I've seen in a long time. He genuinely loves what's he's doing. Geez people. Cam is awesome. Keep pounding. War Eagle!

Chuki Pass
Chuki Pass

Dab on they a$$ Cam !!! Let's go Panthers!!!

John Jd Duncan
John Jd Duncan

There's not a team in the history of the NFL that does more for their community than the Carolina Panthers. TD, Cam, Greg Olsen. ...read the press you fool.

Barbara Richardson
Barbara Richardson

I wish all these people saying negative things about Cam would shut the f*uck up but we all can't have what we want!

Carolyn Jones
Carolyn Jones

Two words Tom Brady or Manning. Their wants aren't ours. Go cam