Reporting from the Jockosphere
Be careful what you tweet, NCAA coaches.
"How much damage could I do in 140 characters?"
Ever since a few high-profile college coaches have gotten on Twitter -- namely Pete Carroll, Tom Crean, John Calipari and Gary Williams -- there's been a bit of debate about just what coaches are allowed to do on the platform. And it's taking place on Twitter, of all places.
Crean tweeted this a few weeks back: "I appreciate how many people are following me on this. Please remember that I cannot read or respond to replies. NCAA rules."
To which, Kathleen Hessert, the President of Sports Media Challenge, and the woman responsible for teaching Shaq how to use Twitter, responded with this: "Really? Compliance pros differ significantly on this. It needs clarity!"
I called the NCAA yesterday to get the skinny, and here's what I found: Crean is right. Any type of chatter back and forth via @replies that can be viewed in the public domain is not allowed. However, direct messaging on Twitter -- which can only be viewed by the two people involved in the communicating -- is permissible. (Same goes for Facebook. A coach can use the messaging function, which is similar to an e-mail, but he can't write on Facebook walls.) This falls in accordance with the current electronic transmission guidelines that are already in place.
"We view that option on Twitter the same as we view normal e-mails," said Cameron Schuh, Associate Director of Public and Media Relations for the NCAA. "It's just you can't post those (direct messages) on your main page."
"We view Twitter as a blog," Schuh continued. "As long as coaches are on there talking about what they're doing with their day and how their practice went or things like that … not getting into specific terms, that's fine. They can't talk about a person they're recruiting, or they can't use it to talk about their whereabouts on a recruiting trip."
So there you have it. If Coach Crean isn't responding to any of your replies, it's for a reason. Try direct messaging him. And if he doesn't respond to that? He probably hates you. (Kidding.)
Mark Cuban is in the headlines. Again. You see, after the Mavericks went down 3-0 to the Nuggets over the weekend in a bit of a controversial ending, Cuban got in a small verbal spat with Kenyon Martin's mom. She said Cuban said "Your son's a punk." Cuban says some fans were calling the Nuggets "thugs" and he chimed in with: "That includes your son."
Whatever was exactly said, Cuban took to his blog to make peace.
It doesn't matter why I said it," he writes. "I shouldn't have said anything. Now, the reality is that this has gotten out of hand.
"So at this point I would like to apologize to you and your mom, Kmart, for my comment. I should have not said anything and I was wrong. Hopefully you will accept the apology and we can move on.
"When the series comes back to Dallas, your family, and the family of other Nuggets players are welcome to stay in my suite with my family. It's amazing how tempers mellow when real people talk to each other and realize that it's still just a game.
"If that isn't acceptable, I'm happy to provide a suite, free of charge to them as well and place whatever security is needed to make them feel comfortable."
Ahh, isn't that nice. Problem is: unless the Mavs win tomorrow night, the series won't be heading back to Dallas. The series will be over.
Everybody has an opinion on Manny Ramirez's recent suspension, including the Wizards' Brendan Haywood.
"You may not know it but I'm a big baseball fan," he writes. "I was shocked at the recent suspension of Manny Ramirez! Like most fans, I didn't see that coming at all! I was disappointed because it really leaves us fans in limbo because we don't know whether to believe him when he says it was accidental or if he took the banned substance on purpose. Baseball can recover from this steroid scandal error but it's definitely going to take time. At the end of the day, fans want to go to the games to be entertained and as long as players don't continue to come out dirty, fans will support."
Paul DePodesta's Padres are not playing well. And even though he's got a dream job in baseball, it doesn't make the losing any easier.
"People often comment about how much fun our jobs must be, and sometimes I'll respond with, 'It's fun when you win,' " he writes. "Well, we haven't been winning, and it hasn't been much fun.
"Nevertheless, this is part of the reason for this blog - times like this. It's also a time for us to analyze what has gone awry. So what has happened?
"It is often said that you're never as good as you look when things are going well and never as bad as you look when things are going poorly. Our season to date has typified that axiom. Now we have to forget about the last couple of weeks and get out of the trough of the rollercoaster."
"Afterward, people started asking questions about whether it was the best catch I have ever made," he writes. "It's up there for sure. The reason it might be the best is because of the situation of the game. If Sizemore hits that ball a foot further or I miss it, the game is over and Cleveland wins. Being able to bring back that home run a few pitches before Verlander closes the game out for a win makes that catch one of my best.
"You really can't practice this type of play. We joke around in batting practice and try to rob home runs for fun, but we are standing on the warning track when those balls are hit and we usually never catch them. The pitchers actually catch more than me and the other outfielders out there, mostly because they're standing right by the fence to be able to do so."
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