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Attention Twitter Abolitionists

  • Just got done taping a segment for the Irish Huddle with Mr. Somogyi and Tony Roberts. During part of the show we talked about Twitter and how it is often negatively viewed. I wish I had composed my thought enough to say this on air, but just wanted to follow up quickly.

    Those that don't use Twitter or aren't familiar with it seem to think that coaches should ban their players from using the website, or any social media for that matter. What I think gets lost in the conversation is that social media is not inherently evil. It's a tool. It's no different than a hammer, a screwdriver or a knife. If you put a knife in the hand of a surgeon you are likely to get good results. If you put a knife in the hand of a bloodthirsty murderer results will likely be less good.

    Often we publish stories that focus on negative tweets (i.e. Louis Nix, the my guys-his guys meltdown last fall, etc.), but you can learn a lot of great things about college football players via Twitter as well. For example, this week I was able to get a much closer look at the type of work many of the Irish football players do for The Bald and The Beautiful, a charity that helps raise awareness for pediatric cancer. Through tweets from guys like former QB Dayne Crist and OL Mike Golic, Jr. I learned a lot more about something they are passionate about.

    To ban Twitter completely, I think, does a disservice to your players and your fans. Talking to Louis Nix yesterday, he mentioned that he loves to reach out to fans and say "What's up?" when they contact him of Facebook or Twitter whether they are 4 years old or 40 years old because he always wished he could interact with his favorite athletes when he was a little kid.

    I understand you don't want to cause unnecessary drama by providing a direct link to a 20-year-old's inner thoughts, but some times those inner thoughts can shine a great light on the player and the school. They can provide a little insight that might make these guys seem more human and less like cogs in a machine. Social media can be used for good or for bad. Taking away that privilege if a player uses social media to hurt his team or giveaway company secrets makes sense. To simply shut it down would be a mistake.

    This post has been edited 3 times, most recently by Dan Murphy 2 years ago

  • Well said, I like seeing what our guys are up to. Use it, don't abuse it.

  • Dan you make a lot of good points but I think the same could be said with allowing players to schedule/do their own interviews with the media. I am sure we would be able to learn a great deal more about the players if it was allowed. It is really not much different. Not many coaches would be comfortable with giving free rein to a player to be in charge of when they do and do not give an interview. I really do not see Twitter as being that much different.

    Scored 4 a single game. Polk High!

  • What should be shut down is adults bashing recruits for leaving or picking another school. Not a true fan or wanting to do it an ND way.

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    2 time POTW winner on some dates I can't remember from 2yrs ago at BNG, POTW: 1/3/11- 1/9/11, 6/20/11-6/26/11

  • Two differences:

    First, social media allows players complete control to share whatever they want to share. In interviews they are asked direct questions that they are expected to answer. Often times they're topics they wouldn't want to talk about but answer the question because that's what you do in an interview.

    Second, the main reason that interviews are controlled is so that players don't have to deal with a dozen different reporters nagging them all the time when trying to do school work or other things. The controlled interviews give them a small window when they talk to the press, and we aren't supposed to reach out and contact them at other times. Having a little more control of what they say is a byproduct of that, in my opinion.