Dear Cam Newton....
Thanks. Thanks for everything.
Your decision to go to the NFL and skip your senior season was expected, but we still never dreamed your time as an Auburn player would be so short.
You committed to the Tigers on Dec. 31, 2009. For 375 days, you were officially an Auburn Tiger.
It's difficult to accept that when we take the field at A-Day, you will not be there.
It's difficult to accept that the next QB at Auburn will likely not be able to jump over a Pat Dye Field fence in a single bound.
His time as an Auburn Tiger player was short. However, his time as part of the Auburn family was not short. It's still going on. It will go on until the day that he dies.
Once a Tiger, always a Tiger. Once your battle cry becomes "War Eagle," it will stay your battle cry.
That's what makes Auburn so special. Other places have nations. Bama Nation, Gator Nation, etc... but not Auburn. Nations fall. Ask Rome. Family is forever. Auburn is forever.
Cam, you may be leaving for the draft, but you need to know that the Auburn family is still behind you every step of the way in support. We knew it was coming. We knew there was no better time.
You've won a Heisman. You've won a national championship, which was a very big reason why you chose Auburn over Oklahoma and Mississippi State.
You stood calm in the face of controversy. When everybody was doubting you and doubting Auburn, you were at your very best.
Playing at Alabama, down 24-0, after being welcomed in by "Son of a Preacher Man" and "Take the Money and Run" and having fake money with your mugshot from two years ago at Florida as the picture being thrown at you... and all of which had been encouraged by the University itself, who then has a fanbase with the audacity to turn around and give you an unneeded lecture about the integrity they think you lack.
Auburn 28, Alabama 27.
To quote al.com writer Kevin Scarbinsky, "If it's Auburn against the world, good luck world."
The haters were out there. With success comes morons who believe everything they see on the "Worldwide Leader." Worldwide leader of what? Unnamed sources? Annoying talking heads? What about the worldwide leader of ratings, which is half the reason your name was smeared like a ladybug running into a monster truck?
Lost in this were all the little things you did as a student at Auburn University. Helping out at multiple elementary schools? No late-night bombshells on "The Worldwide Leader" about that.
How do you feel about Cam Newton's decision?
The way you handled yourself was top-notch. It could not have been handled better.
It was even more evident when you didn't turn on your father for his greedy deed. You continued to love him, as the book key to human life, the Bible, instructs.
And boy, oh boy, did you produce on the football field. Thirty TD passes, 20 TD runs and a receiving TD. That's 51 touchdowns!
You had the courage to play much of the fourth quarter of the BCS Title Game injured. When you were asked by Jay Leno if you had been injured, you simply responded, "If I got hurt, it was worth it."
Have you ever heard a pretty boy like, say, Tom Brady say something like that?
It's always difficult to say goodbye. Especially since we only got to witness one year of arguably the best Auburn football player ever (maybe even better than Bo Jackson).
But this is something you have to do. There is no better time.
Leaving now means you finish your career with zero losses: 14-0. You broke the record for TD runs in a season at a school named "Running Back U."
Remember this, Cam: You will always be welcomed at Auburn University. Always. No matter what. Once a Tiger, always a Tiger.
That's what the Auburn Family is about, after all.