SPARTANBURG, S.C. -- Cam Newton is available.
Got a girlfriend?
"I wish I did," the magnetic Carolina Panthers quarterback said during a recent sit-down interview with USA TODAY Sports. "I'm looking for one. You got somebody for me?"
Gold-diggers need not apply. Newton, 23, says it has been difficult to find a soul mate because he has sensed many of the women he has encountered are primarily attracted to his money and fame.
And by his own admission, it is not easy to get close the emerging star, whose outstanding play on the field parallels his commercial appeal and buzz factor.
"It's a cliché for people to say you have to be on alert," Newton said. "But sometimes, that is the case. You may see a particular female who's attractive, but you already sense it.
"I pray for discretion every single night, that I can see through people, see what their greater good is. Sometimes that individual 'wows' you by the eye, but when it come to heart to heart, that person's not there for you. That's not just females. That may be friends, people who come into your life just to use you for who you are."
Newton, the NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Year last season after being drafted No. 1 overall, says he enjoys getting out in public (but isn't big on nightclubs) and does not ever want to get to the point where he is trapped socially by his success.
Yet he is also wary, with a small inner circle.
"Genuine people, at this stage of my life, are very scarce," Newton said. "That's unfortunate. Most of the time, I don't really give people a chance. I have a wall up. I'm always protecting who I am. Thinking about my brand. I make it hard on people. Sometimes, it's a good thing. Sometimes, it's a bad thing."
Either way, Newton is undoubtedly one of the NFL's most eligible bachelors.