There are Three Categories of Coaches in This Video
The first, they are admittedly naive about social media and, for one reason or another, unwilling to even take the time to learn what it is (Jim Boeheim). Second, they are aware but frightened of social media to the point they try and control it; and third, they fully embrace the power of social media to build their program’s brand and reap the benefits of deepening the emotional ties their fans and recruits have to their program.
By far, the most interesting excerpt from the interview for me was Coach Jim Christian from TCU, who looks at one of the advantages of social media being the teachable moments that come from mistakes. I’m going to assume that was taken out of context, but I like the outlook that he has where he is at least willing to accept that social media is really just an extension of real life.
The comments “I remember when you had to actually call somebody” or “They need to develop social skills” are just outdated ways of thinking. Social media is or already has become the preferred method of communication for teens. The more these coaches ignore social media, the more difficult it will be for them to understand and ultimately recruit these athletes.
Going back to Coach Rice of UNLV, I think he 100 percent gets it with social media. Your players and staff can help build a brand with social media that makes you more attractive to fans and recruits.
How Will Social Media Change Recruiting?
If it hasn’t started already, it will soon, where social media policies will be a consideration just like training schedules for high-level recruits. Recruits will begin to think twice about going to schools like South Carolina where they monitor all of their athletes’ social media accounts or a school that doesn’t monitor the accounts. It might not be a make-or-break factor, but it will have an impact.
I don’t think there is anything wrong with a school monitoring your accounts while you represent their university, but I certainly think the programs who are trying to ban social media are really missing the point. It is a hugely powerful tool to build a fan base and connect with recruits like never before. Savvy coaches are already taking advantage, and like any change, there are going to be a couple of old-timers who will get left behind; and ultimately, their competitive records will suffer.
As a college recruit, how important will social media policies be in your decision? Would you be okay with a school monitoring your social media accounts? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below or on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+!