This Week in the Twitterverse

Submitted by BiSB on August 1st, 2013 at 9:12 AM

Aaaaand we’re back. And we’re done with the ennui stuff. Mostly. More on that in a bit. But for now, we return to the decidedly more upbeat world of social media. As usual, if you come across anything that you think deserves a spot here, send it to @Bry_Mac. Or just find me on the blog. I’ll be the football-playing golden retriever.


Just when everything was going right for the Maize and Blue, a bombshell. Michigan has once again been thrust into the harrowing and unpredictable world of NCAA violations. And this time, the violations come from the very top of the Twitterverse.

That was Twitter CEO and Michigan uber-fan Dick Costolo sharing either a congratulations or a simple comment of amazement on the commitment of George Campbell. The problem was that he replied directly to Campbell and Wilton Speight, which you loyal TWIT readers recognize as an NCAA no-no. Now, this happens all the time, so while it is technically a violation, I’m sure it won’t get very much attention… except for here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and holy crap how can this return 2000 results?

We’re on thin ice here, so Mr. Costolo, if you’re reading this, (a) I know it’s dumb as all get-out but you probably shouldn’t do this again, and (b) HOLY CRAP DICK COSTOLO READS MGOBLOG. Mind staying for an interview? We can order pizza. It’ll be fun.

Don’t worry, though. Ohio State may be equally screwed. You see, their newest commit, Demetrius Knox, has been a long-time Buckeye fan, and as such he has been posting for a long time on the Eleven Warriors forum. J’accuse! The posters communicating with him have been unknowingly violating NCAA strictures for months, if not years. It’s such a problem that they literally have to ostracize the kid.

Meanwhile, Bob Stoops becomes the latest coach to actively encourage fans to tweet recruits.

"That's something that's becoming a part of it," said Stoops when asked if he had concerns about fans contacting recruits on Twitter. "We may hire you to govern our social media with the fans… I'm not kidding," he said. Once things get rolling, it's not stopping."

So wait a minute: Stoops is just openly telling fans to contact recruits on Twitter? Something even OU's own compliance department frowns upon?

"I'm pretty sure that's what it means," said Stoops. "You hear that OU fans? We have to get on board."


This is on the heels of Vandy coach James Franklin condoning it. And yet THIS isn’t a violation. Orchestrating innumerable violations is not itself a violation. I guess what I’m saying is O’BANNON RULES.

GRIII doing GRIII things

Submitted without comment. Because I can’t words.

[After the jump: SAVAGES!!!]

Spartan Savage Squad

As was discussed in yesterday’s This Week’s Obsession, Michigan’s resounding recruiting success owes some of its resoundingness to social media. Commits are keeping in constant contact with the coaching staff’s most highly coveted targets. Michigan State has taken note, and has launched their own effort to entice recruits to become #SpartanDawgs. But their effort seems a little… different.


That’s one way to go, I guess. But it’s a new age, so you don’t know how well something will work until it’s tried. Let’s see where they go with this.

Did… are they crowdsourcing recruiting? They’re looking for IDEAS? JEEBUS, man, chip in together and buy a 247 subscription. They’re pretty cheap, and they’ll give you a bunch of names and positions and stuff. Though perhaps this handle is just a way to keep fans involved. I’m sure behind the scenes they have a good grasp on


Does he have a Twitter? And do you guys know how to post videos to Facebook? Ah well, whatever keeps people feeling positive and confident about the direction of the class.

They’re playing the “he’s not ‘handsome,’ per se, but he’s really funny” card. And we’re still 6 months from signing day. Never change, Sparty.

Speaking of Sparty…

MSU wideout DeAnthony Arnett transferred to MSU from Tennessee last year, but he was unexpectedly unproductive. He had only 3 catches all year, and barely saw the field for long periods of time. Part of the issue may be what Peter Gibbons called a “problem of motivation.” It’s not that he’s unmotivated, mind you. It’s that the source of his motivation isn’t likely to make him any friends in Former Sparty Head Coach Hall (it may have a name, but Google is too much work):


H/T @L5Society, @Chris_George92

Maybe DeAnthony doesn’t know this, but the word “Braylon” is reeeeeeally frowned upon in MSU circles. Other than MIke Hart and that Wisconsin punter from the ‘11 B1G Championship game, I’m not sure if there is a more despised football player in the last decade.

Besides, it’s not like he doesn’t have inspirational former college receivers at his own school. There was Charles Rogers (before he shot his career in the foot), Plaxico Burress (before he shot his foot in the foot), Andre Rison (before Left Eye burned his mansion to the ground), Kirk Gibson (before he played baseball), and Muhsin Muhammad (before he… actually, he turned out fine. But he played for the Panthers, so it doesn’t count).

We’re doing this AGAIN? Really?

Yep, another football player posted a picture of himself flashing wads of cash. This time it was Alabama D-Liner Dee Liner.


Insert stock commentary here: not necessarily illegal or an NCAA violation, but necessarily a dumb thing to do. 

You don’t really GET the zone read, do you?

College football’s plethora of offensive schemes are slowly working their way into the NFL. Some people are adapting to this better than others. Take for instance Bart Hubbuch, who is an NFL writer for the New York Post. Let me repeat that, because it’s going to be important in a minute: he’s someone who is paid  to write about football for the New York Post, which has a weekday circulation of more than half a million readers.

Mr. Hubbuch is doing a camp tour, and stopped by Eagles practice to check up on Chip Kelly and company. He came back with a report that was less than technically sound


H/T @ECStoner

You intrepid readers likely noticed the problem. The read option isn’t a formation. It’s a play that can be run out of a bunch of formations. Several other people noticed this, and asked Mr. Hubbuch to clarify. He said that he hadn’t been clear, and that he meant that they had run actual read option plays all practice. Out of the pistol. I kindly asked him to clarify what he meant (and whether he knew what the pistol was, or whether it was just a spread-type word for “shotgun”), because the formation he described was most decidedly NOT the pistol. So he said he meant they had run it out of both. Which I and others pointed out went against what he said in the above tweet. He then admitted he was wrong.

Just kidding. He deleted the above tweet, our conversation, and a bunch of other things where he tried to defend his lack of knowledge about spread football. He also issued some stirring riposts to his doubters, questioning their spelling…


Their sexual proclivities vis-à-vis football highlights…


and their spelling again.


Twitter rant aside, watching NFL media folks try to adapt to read option football is fascinating. Some pick it up, but you get the feeling some haven’t watched a college game in years. I remember one CBS broadcast last year in which the color guy remarked that a particular defensive end was playing poorly, noting that he was guessing wrong almost every time. After all, whenever the End went after the running back, the quarterback seemed to have it, and vice versa. I suppose it could be worse, though. It’s not like actual FOOTBALL people are… /puts finger to ear… oh, holy hell. Really, Jets?

The coaches are toying with the idea of turning [Geno] Smith into what Tebow was supposed to be last season -- a change-of-pace quarterback (assuming he doesn't win the starting job). Smith would have a package of plays, mainly read-option runs that could exploit his speed.

Sigh. It might be time to remove the Jets from the “actual football people” column.


Ennui Update

For those who missed the earlier posts, we had some fun seeing what things sucked worse than other things. In two parts. We have completed the first round of voting in our quest through the fire swamp.   Voter turnout was good, with more than 1100 people taking the first survey and nearly 900 taking the second. There were few surprises. The results were as follows

Daggers Region:

  • #1 Miracle in Michigan (Colorado '94) bombed #8 Kalin Lucas/Peedi Sims (MSU '10) handily, 94%-6%
  • #2 Spartan Bob (MSU '01) ran out the clock on #7 Ben Brust (UW '13) 74%-26%
  • #3 Evan Turner (OSU '10) splashed #6 Josh Gasser (UW '11), 87%-13%
  • #5 Gong Show (Miami (NTM) '10) upset #4 The Fall of Tiny Jesus (UMD '11) in the closest matchup of the first round, 52%-48%

What Could Have Been Region:

  • #1 Webber's Timeout (UNC, '92) walloped #8 Pitch it to Breaston (Neb. '05), 90%-10%
  • #2 Crable NOOOOO (OSU, '06) speared #7 Roundtree at the One (Illinois '09) 93%-7%
  • #6 Goodnight Sweet Ulnar Nerve (Neb. '12) knocked #3 2003 Frozen Four (Minn.) out of the game, 65%-35%
  • #4 An Inch from a B1G Title (IU '13) held onto the ball against #5 High and Tight, Train (NU '00) 69%-31%

Well That Was Unpleasant Region:

  • #1 The Horror (REMIX) (Oregon '07) blew away #8 Trash Tornado (MSU ’11), 77%-23%
  • #2 Michigan vs. Everything (2008 football) embarrassed #7 MBB vs. MSU '13, 98%-2%
  • #3 The End of the '10 season gave up lots of votes, but beat #6 The Death of Manball (OSU ‘07), 52%-48%
  • #5 Dallas De-pantsing (Alabama '12) went all pre-weight gain Eddie Lacy on #4 Senior Day Massacre (MSU '00), 65%-35%

General FML Region

  • #1 The Horror (Appalachian St. ‘07) defeated #8 Ohio Upset (Ohio U. ‘12). Ohio DID get votes. Let’s leave it at that.
  • The smart money was on #2 The Ed Martin Saga over #7 The End of The Streak (Hockey ‘13), 84%-16%
  • #3 The RichRod Experiment went full #MACtion on #6 Holy Toledo (‘08), 54%-46%
  • #4 Desmond Howard Tripped (MSU ‘90) hauled down #5 Stretchgate (football ‘09), 55%-45%

The Sweet-Merciful-God-Why Sixteen voting is now open.  Vote here:

Your weekly Roy Manning

We missed last week, so here’s a double dose of Coach Manning.



August 1st, 2013 at 9:32 AM ^

is awesome...but I feel like he should be focusing on the road in front of him vs. recording awesome Vines.

Don't Vine & Drive, Keep 'Crootin Coordinators Alive!

Wisconsin Wolverine

August 1st, 2013 at 9:33 AM ^

That Manning vine cracks me up every time. Also, thanks for pointing out the SpartanSavageSquad - I can't believe that's a thing. They're laying a strong foundation of "we have no idea what we're doing" pretty early.


August 1st, 2013 at 10:16 AM ^

felt a little bit bad for MSU after this post. We're really fortunate to have Wilton Speight, Michael Ferns, etc. to spearhead recruiting other players. Also, a thought... I was not alive to see the Webber timeout, but I do no that there was no gaurantee we would've won the game even if he hadn't called the timeout. Compare that to the Burke block-that-wasn't this year. Not a bonehead error of any sort, which makes it extremely frustrating to relive because it was out of our control. After Siva hits those free throws, Michigan never really got back into the game. If Burke makes that block, it's a whole new game. Obviously the Webber timeout was brutal, but I feel it may have been as embarassing as it was consequential, if not more. I may be wrong

Kermits Blue Key

August 1st, 2013 at 12:14 PM ^

Football equivalents:

Webber TO: down 3 with 15 seconds to go at the 20 yard line - FG ties it, TD wins the game. It's 4th down, the clock is running, and Michigan has no TO's. QB takes the snap and spikes the ball to stop the clock. Game over.

Burke block: opposing team is kicking a field goal with 2:00 left in the 4th qtr to go up 10 and misses it, but ref calls bullshit running into the kicker call. It's not a first down, so opposing teams rekicks and makes it. Instead of being down 7, Michigan is now down 10. It's a very big hill to climb, but there's still a chance.

One is much more consequential than the other.


August 1st, 2013 at 10:20 AM ^

If we went up with say the 2008 Football season vs the RR Experiment for our national championship, I wonder how that plays out?  They're just different shades of the same color.  



August 1st, 2013 at 10:22 AM ^

If you wish to keep what little faith in humanity you still have, DO NOT click on that first link to the CBS Sports article and DO NOT read the comments. The first five include a detailed investigation into Michigan's new pay for play program under Hoke, a wickedly clever and original "scUM" usage (twice!), and someone using the words "Obamacare" in a college sports article. My soul couldn't handle reading past those.


August 1st, 2013 at 10:26 AM ^

I think my favorite part about the Spartan recruiting Twitter thing is that its location is listed as "Beast Lansing, MI." Look out, everybody! This guy hails from Beast Lansing!


August 1st, 2013 at 10:32 AM ^

If I were a sought after recruit I'd:

1. Fake commit to Michigan State

2. Get Access to the twitter account and change the password to gain complete control of the account

3. ???????

4. Profit


August 1st, 2013 at 10:56 AM ^

at the spartansavage thing but I'm not really sure I have a full grasp of what it is because I don't get the twitter. At all.

So, this is just an account where a bunch of people can tweet things? Is there an MSU coach or something that runs it? Is he spartansavage? I feel I can't fully enjoy the crapitude of it until I understand exactly what the hell it is.

Any help would be appreciated.

Evil Empire

August 1st, 2013 at 11:00 AM ^

He's got a good grasp of the nuanced differences between the college and pro games.  He and the rest of the Fox announcers are always so helpful during bowl games.


August 1st, 2013 at 11:36 AM ^

Don’t worry, though. Ohio State may be equally screwed. You see, their newest commit, Demetrius Knox, has been a long-time Buckeye fan, and as such he has been posting for a long time on the Eleven Warriors forum. J’accuse! The posters communicating with him have been unknowingly violating NCAA strictures for months, if not years. It’s such a problem that they literally have to ostracize the kid.

So this guy is so enthused about OSU that he wants to go on a blog and talk about OSU stuff with other OSU fans and they literally cannot talk to him. Stupidest thing ever.


August 1st, 2013 at 11:52 AM ^

It takes a certain type of mentality to admit your 2014 class is short on talent but high on "heart."  Nothing sells the dream to young recruits like the idea of losing but getting juice boxes and orange slices at the end.

Roy Manning is a treasure for UM that must be cherished.  I love the part about him hitting the weights.


August 1st, 2013 at 11:56 AM ^

I can't believe Trash Tornado didn't get more votes against The Horror REMIX. Yeah that game sucked, but it was ultimately meaningless and anyway weren't we already numb from the real Horror?

Whereas the Trash Tornado was a painfully awful offensive disaster that made us question Borges' sanity, filled with double-A gap blitzes, jumped snaps, ill advised throws, and a WTF playcall on a 4th down with the game on the line. And despite all that we were in it mostly till the end.

And oh yeah, a win in the Trash Tornado would have put us in the B1G championship game that year, where a win would have made us a 12-1 B1G champ and a possible pick for the BCS championship...

What if we hadn't gotten shellacked in the Oregon game? The season probably goes about the same. Even at their best the 2007 team probably wouldn't have beaten Oregon anyway, and it's not like 1 fewer loss that season would have significantly changed our bowl prospects.


August 1st, 2013 at 1:00 PM ^

Having been at both The Horror and the ensuing Oregon beat down, I can tell you that the Oregon game was FAR worse psychologically than the Trash Tornado. It's the only game I couldn't bear to finish watching, which I'm not proud to admit.

Everyone knew that was Carr's last season, and some even thought a title game appearance was possible. I think we were preseason #5.