“Talent is God given. Be humble. Fame is man-given. Be grateful. Conceit is self-given. Be careful.” -John Wooden

Whether or not you watched the Super Bowl this past Sunday, the most popular commentary aside from the celebration by the Denver Broncos, was coverage of the Carolina Panthers’ quarterback Cam Newton’s reaction to losing. Newton’s juvenile reaction has been heavily criticized by the media.

Maybe talking to the media about his team’s loss immediately after the game was a bad idea. Newton walked out on reporters after only a handful of terse, one-word responses to their questions. In comparison, one of his teammates, who was equally distraught at their Super Bowl loss, shook Peyton Manning’s hand in congratulations and saluted him while still on the field.

Newton has addressed the media since Sunday and defended his questionable post-game behavior:

“I’ve got no more tears to cry. At the end of the day, when you invest so much time and sacrifice so much and things don’t go as planned, the emotions take over. That’s what happens.”

In every game, there are two contests: First, you have the sport in question, the score. Then you have the contest of who can win with grace and lose with dignity. Hopefully Cam Newton will take a page from Peyton Manning’s book and learn from this experience and apply that knowledge next time.