February 1st, 2013 at 10:53 AM ^

I like it. I think it's a smart way to get the point across, in a more or less controlled way.

But jeez:

How can you be that dumb, especially with all of the Teo stuff that's gone down recently?


February 1st, 2013 at 12:34 PM ^

It's like Dateline but with Dave Brandon instead.

Dave Brandon: "So star athlete, our online chat record shows here that you said you'd like to put your **** in her **** and then **** and **** until **** and with her mom **** **** **** jello ****....what do you have to say for yourself?"


February 1st, 2013 at 10:58 AM ^

define "inappropriate response". If a hot girl comes onto you, what else are you going to do? Its probably not like the atheletes offered to whip out credit cards and pay for her meals sight unseen.


February 1st, 2013 at 12:34 PM ^

Sorry sir, you are assuming incorrectly.

Why would the girl use her real account to hit on/contact athletes if she's not a starfucker?  Especially since they assumed it would illicit some non PC responses, and grandma is probably her Facebook friend.  She probably made a second account named "Babycakes McGee" and only uploaded a picture or two.  I'm also only assuming, but assumedly I am assuming better.


February 1st, 2013 at 1:18 PM ^

I'd agree, with one caveat.

I wouldn't expect my company to take it upon themselves to teach me life lessons.  I would expect my university to do just that.

That being said, if my boss publicly shamed me for posting on this site when I should be working, I would lose some trust there, yes.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:32 AM ^

They didn't release the names, but certainly everyone who was in that meeting knows who got fooled, and now that deadspin knows it occurred, there will certainly be some attempts to ferret out who it was.

And there should be a quid pro quo to the idea that student-athletes shouldn't embarass the university.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:34 AM ^

THis is not something that could be FOIAed or whatever. The only way the people involved gets out to the public is if a player involved says so, and then the other players can simply deny. At any rate, if one player outed any others, something tells me he wouldn't be a popular guy around campus anymore.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:47 AM ^

It can't be foia'd, but that doesn't stop people from sniffing around, even students who can then try to sell the story to media sources willing to print it. And if nothing else, it puts the idea out there in the public that Michigan athletes are a bunch of easy marks. If Brandon doesn't say anything, none of that is out there.

EDIT: on further consideration, what makes you so confident that this couldn't be FOIA'ed. I wouldn't think Brandon's correspondence with student-athletes would be protected under FERPA (it's not part of their educational record and Brandon is not involved in a formal educational manner). That's not to say that someone will FOIA this (PITA, little payoff for the effort), but I'm not sure they couldn't.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:55 AM ^

There's nothing to FOIA. You think that the university created some sort of file of athletes that responded inapproriately?Highly doubtful.  Whoever was running the program just kept tabs on the raio of appropriate to inappropriate responses. This isn't a drug sting. They didn't sit the individual kids down and shake their fingers in their faces.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:20 AM ^

You are a University of Michigan scholarship athlete. Why the heck would you bother getting girls on Twitter/Facebook? Choose a girl on campus. Tell her you are on the football/basketball/hockey team. The rest will be easy. Trust me.


February 1st, 2013 at 1:54 PM ^

I met a woman via Facebook, who lived in Philly, that I would never ever have met otherwise. She flew in to see me. It was awesome. We are still friends to this day. Yes I dated plenty of women on campus but sometimes the out of town girl makes a real (see what I did there) connection with you, and isn't your teammates ex GF/roommate's crush/FWB w the swim team/girl who gives # to every athlete etc.

Section 1

February 1st, 2013 at 11:55 AM ^

What a world we live in, where even Ron Jeremy jokes have become outre'.


I am just glad, that we could roll into one single comprehensive thread; Dave Brandon, fake internet girlfriends, Twitter, recruiting violations, real live female athletes, FOIA's, Gene Smith and Ron Jeremy.

This thread could really be something, if we could figure out how to include Rich Rodriguez and the Free Press but I am totally stumped.  My apologies to the Board.

Section 1

February 1st, 2013 at 12:53 PM ^

This thread works Arby's curly fries into the discussion, which is totally brilliant, and I just wanted to mention that.  It is a total, complete meal.  With a medium beverage of your choice.  How can there be any need for any more dicsussion topics after this one?


February 1st, 2013 at 11:22 AM ^

This story taken at face value is positively Kakuaesque in its absurdity.

I agree though that it is a really good idea for U-Mich to provide its athletes (who are very visible representatives of the university and its brand(on)) first hand lessons on not shaming yourself via social media.  That said, the 'no shame' motif kinda gets undercut when you blab about it to the public after the fact.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:28 AM ^

You really believe this is something that could be kept secret? No chance. Too funny, involves too many people. The basic tentents of good PR say come out with it yourself. Then you can have better control over the public perception. You try to keep it secret, and this is what you ned up with:

University of Michigan employing call girls for student athletes

Michigan Athletes encouraged to 'chat dirty' with university employees

Michigan football players 'catfished' by university staff: Plot to free up scholarships by forcing transfers/entrapment?

Yeah, you don't want that.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:45 AM ^

OK so the options are:

-Inevitable yet unintended media discovery brings shame and suspicion upon program from outsiders' perspectives


-Deliberate use of "educational" shaming of players as publicity stunt brings shame and suspicion between players and administration

... third option

-Do something else

It may seem small but these sorts of antics can severely corrode the integrity of an organization.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:51 AM ^

Unless people from within the program who were privy to the whole thing; which is probably Brandon, an attractive and professional private contractor who was paid a massive silence fee, the team head coaches and the players themselves; come out and say who were the parties that sent inappropriate messages, it's not embarassing for anyone but the university itself just a little.

Then you flip that around, and suddenly you've got the folowing points:

1 - A university that cares enough about their athletes to come up with unconventional tactics like this.

2 - Players that are better educated through the school of hard-knocks than another form could ever educate them.

3 - Parents of recruits that see how hard the university will work to educate and protect their kids from something more disasterous than "a little embarassment".

I'll take that any day.


February 1st, 2013 at 11:58 AM ^

Given your initial assumptions, how does it even come out without Brandon publicly mentioning it?  

I agree with all your numbered points, as long as it stays in house. The minute the AD, unprovoked, tells an audience of reporters about it, it appears far less caring.


February 1st, 2013 at 12:00 PM ^

What I meant is that the thing happening would come out. It would come out that the university was showing the players the dangers of social media in this manner. What should NOT come out is which players responded inappropriately.


February 1st, 2013 at 12:10 PM ^

But if we take these assumptions (which are essentially your initial assumptions in the prior post)

1. Brandon and his staff aren't going to talk about it publicly 

2. The "contractor" isn't going to talk about it publicly

3. The coaches aren't going to talk about it publicly

4. The players aren't going to talk about it publicly

Then it's unclear to me how the story gets out beyond the level of vague campus rumor, a level which rarely makes it into print. 

Maybe it does get out, but there's at least a non-zero chance that it doesn't. And if it's discovered later by a reporter in a rumor -> inquiry -> official statement, rather than an off the cuff public announcement of basically "oh yeah, we catfished our athletes," how does that make the story any more damaging? if anything, it makes it seem less so.