UNDATED (AP) — Cam Newton has grown tired of discussing the relevance of an African-American quarterback appearing in the Super Bowl.
The Carolina Panthers signal-caller was grilled on the topic during a news conference Tuesday and finally told a reporter that “it’s not an issue. It’s an issue to you.” Newton added that “I think we shattered that a long time ago.”
This was the third time Newton had to deal with the subject since the Panthers made the Super Bowl. Instead of discussing race, he stressed the importance of being a role model and an inspiration to others.
Newton isn’t the first African-American quarterback to make it to the Super Bowl. Seattle’s Russell Wilson appeared in the previous two title games, Doug Williams won it with the 1987 Redskins and Steve McNair, Donovan McNabb and Colin Kaepernick have started Super Bowl games.
Also today, the NFL announced that Lady Gaga is set to sing the national anthem at the Super Bowl. Gaga won a Golden Globe for her role in “American Horror Story: Hotel” last month and is nominated for best original song at the next month’s Academy Awards.
Oscar-winning actress Marlee Matlin will perform in American Sign Language during the national anthem.