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has taken the college football recruiting to a whole new level. In 2012, many commits and de-commits have used Twitter
as jumping boards to decisions, and reactions of their future. The “Bandwagon” of recruiting has taken off, and surely gets a rise out of fans, media, coaches, players, and family following the every move of a prospect.
Many think once a player is “verbally committed”, then other coaches from different schools shouldn’t pursue him. Others say recruits are fair game until they sign the dotted line on their Letter of Intent
(Feb.2). Which in both cases make valid arguments, but a solution could give coaches, and potential recruits an alternative to the madness. How about adapting an early signing period right before the College Football season starts? This would alleviate a lot of pressure, and conflict in the recruiting process. It would propose, that if a recruit signs in the “Early Period”, he is not to be contacted by other schools and coaches seeking involvement in recruiting. Twitter has adapted the recruiting process, putting emotions into a roller-coaster ride that probably won’t change anytime soon. Between high school players, coaches, and fans the instant gratification of Twitter has become an addiction of hot news, and comments for all. With the Coaching Carousel going on, many players get a “change of heart”, and want to go to the coach in which he first established a bond with. I think it’s clear to see that Twitter is still fairly new, people are still learning the process of it, so mistakes will obviously be made. I personally think if there is a private setting, use it. So many times there is info from an unreliable source or that slips out into public knowledge. People (coaches,players,fans,media) need to put only what they want everyone else to see, and realize social media is exactly what it means. Disclosure isn’t the worst thing in the world, and may be an excellent way to keep the madness of College Football recruiting down a bit.
I think with the ever-changing influence of Twitter and Facebook taking storm of College Football boundaries should be set, but I also think that social media is a great tool for coaches and players to find info, interact, or simply to get recruited. The NCAA
limits the number of phone calls coaches can make to recruits. Text messaging is banned altogether, while social media is far less regulated. For example, on facebook, a coach can’t write on a recruit’s wall page, but they can send private messages during contact periods. On Twitter, coaches aren’t allowed to publicly mention recruits, but they can send direct messages to the recruit. So it’s become a “must need” for coaches and players involved in their recruiting process. Also, through social media, a coach can learn who else is contacting the recruit by whom they “follow” or “friends” with.
Everyone needs to realize that these kids (17+18 years old), are making the biggest decision of their lives, and followers of the student-athletes need to respect the wishes of their requests. The relationship’s built by players/coaches whether it’s on Twitter, Facebook, Family,Coaches, or friends, it is the player’s ultimate choice and shouldn’t be a bashing tool for fans. Collectively as a whole I think Twitter, and Facebook have done wonders for kids trying to get their name out there, and also created a fundamental part of the recruiting world, that won’t slow down anytime soon.