Social media is as much a part of the college student's world as cellphones and computers. Athletes are no different, and while some schools are trying to strip athletes of that part of being a young adult to make their coaches lives easier, others continue to shine.
USC, a team that we've already praised here at YB11, is hitting another home run with its innovative use and overall acceptance of social media.
While teams have embraced Twitter, some even putting hashtags on their fields, no program has gravitated to the social device like USC. As the New York Post reports, the Trojans are using their players' Twitter handles on their depth charts. From USC's preseason depth chart:
Most coaches quietly hope that no media members or fans find the Twitter handles of their players. Instead, USC is putting them out there, front and center for everyone. Because the Trojans are being innovative, they are being open and looking to try new things; let's hope this works out well for them. The last thing these kids need is rival fans berating them or their own fans sending nasty messages to players for poor performances.
This is a strong move by USC as it makes it a point to remain at the forefront of the social media happenings. While Oregon's "Quack Cave" is a nice idea to help fans interact and find content, the Trojans are truly showing they believe in their players' abilities to navigate the social media waters.
That confidence comes from their education program; and if more schools took the time to work on the educating of their athletes, perhaps banning social media wouldn't be all the rage.