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Auburn’s past and future collide Saturday night under the lights at Jordan-Hare Stadium

Former Auburn quarterback Cam Newtron greets Pat Dye on his way into Jordan-Hare Stadium Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016.
Former Auburn quarterback Cam Newtron greets Pat Dye on his way into Jordan-Hare Stadium Saturday, Sept. 3, 2016. mniziolek@ledger-enquirer.com

Cam Newton caused quite the stir during the pregame festivities Saturday night walking out of the tunnel at Jordan-Hare Stadium alongside fellow Auburn legend Bo Jackson.

Newton, sporting a No. 34 jersey in honor of Jackson and bedazzled orange shoes, stepped onto the field to chants of M-V-P.

The Carolina Panthers quarterback spent about an hour walking around midfield with a line of people following him wherever he went.

Newton conversed with coach Gus Malzahn and offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee, and shared a quick hug with opposing quarterback Deshaun Watson. Watson is drawing plenty of comparisons to Auburn’s former Heisman winner.

“He’s an NFL first-round draft choice waiting to happen as was Newton,” SEC Network play-by-play voice Brent Musburger said on Friday.

Musburger called Auburn’s come from behind overtime win over Clemson at Jordan-Hare Stadium in 2010 and sees both quarterbacks as unique all-around athletes.

Many of the faces waiting to catch a glimpse of Newton were potential members of Auburn’s future signing classes.

Verbal commits on hand for Saturday night’s game included four-star offensive lineman Nick Brahms, four-star athlete Alaric Williams, three-star safety Jordyn Peters and three-star kicker Anders Carlson. Brahms’ right leg was in a cast as he recovers from a broken fibula and torn ligments.

The section in the south end zone reserved for recruits was stacked with talent Auburn coaches are still looking to land verbal commits from as well.

Mississippi Gulf Coast four-star defensive end Isaiah Buggs was at the game along with a pair of four-star linebackers out of the 2017 class Will Ignot (Buckhorn High school) and Kenney Britt (Oxford High School).

One familiar recruit on the sidelines from the 2018 class was Central wide receiver Justyn Ross fresh of his team’s 42-14 win over Auburn High School.

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