By Daniel Price
July 6, 2009
Twee-cruiting is here, my friends.
That's right. The two most popular aspects of the Internet to over-zealous sports fans with too much time on their hands—Twitter and major Division 1 recruiting—are now one.
And here I was just getting used to debating how many coach-to-prospect text messages it took to lose a scholarship. (I'm still not sure what the actual number is.)
And at least two ACC schools are already taking advantage of this something.
According to The Washington Post, three coaches at Maryland; Football coach Ralph Friedgen, women's basketball's Brenda Frese, and men's hoops' Gary Williams; and Virginia Tech's Seth Greenberg all tweet. (God, is that really a verb?)
What happened to the days when middle-aged (and borderline elderly) men and women would sooner call a computer a machine of the devil than have Facebook, Myspace, and Twitter accounts?
Don't get me wrong, I'm proud of Ralph & Co. in College Park and Mr. Greenberg in Blacksburg. Bending the rules to get an advantage in athletic competition is as old of a practice as the competition itself. But this has got to stop.
I would ask what will come next and give some crazy example, but I couldn't have thought up this twee-cruiting fiasco. So how do I know what's next?
I don't. And neither does anyone else.
That's why the NCAA has to step in here. Technology is moving faster than college sports' governing body can, and there's only one solution.
Until there are no longer cell phones and some sort of courier system, a freeze must be put on all future forms of recruiting. Yes, Recruits might be more comfortable exchanging texts than envelopes and phone calls. But if that's out of the question, they will realize that listening to someone through their text machine and reading words off of paper isn't that hard.
Yes, I'm a hypocrite. This Web site has a Twitter account.
And yes, the purpose of that Twitter account is to make people read our stories instead of other Web sites' content. But in the media, Twitter has become a necessity.
Before it does so in recruiting—when every coach and his or her mama are tweeting—the NCAA needs to nip this thing in the bud and ban it, along with any future means of coach-to-recruit communication.
Now, I'm off to tweet this column.
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