Assaulted with Twitter trash, Sooners do their best to sweep it up, rise above

Whether they were trying to get Oklahoma stirred up during Florida State week or just trying amuse themselves, someone used the anonymity of the internet to conduct a vile assault on the Sooners. How they rose above it is a story worth noting.
by Jenni Carlson Published: September 14, 2011

Prepare to be shocked by the behavior of a group of college athletes.

Shocked in a good way.

There were two tweeting twerps who used Twitter to attack several Oklahoma football players earlier this week. Tony Jefferson was the first target. Brennan Clay, Ryan Broyles and others were besieged, too.

We know at least one was of the knuckleheads was a Florida State student. While it's impossible to know exactly what motivated the offending cowards who hid behind the Internet's anonymity — Were they attempting to get a rise out of the Sooners before Saturday's showdown? Were they haters trying to give the Seminoles a black eye? — they took ugly to a whole new level.

The Sooners themselves did not.

There were no offensive exchanges, no disgusting retorts, no objectionable comebacks.

The Sooners showed class. Perhaps it's sad that we'd be surprised that athletes, particularly college-aged ones, would act so maturely, but in a sports world too often appalled by the actions of athletes, these young men were surprising for all the right reasons.

On Wednesday, Florida State officials issued an apology via a letter to the editor to the OU Daily. They said that the student who sent the messages was not representative of Seminole fans, but as they acknowledged "he did much harm to the recipients of the messages and OU."

The whole thing started Monday night with a Florida State fan encouraging others on Twitter to talk trash to Jefferson, who is a regular on the social media site. I'm sure the guy just expected people to have a little fun with him.

Someone posting under the name TheGhettoWizard was anything but fun.

While the details are easy enough to find on the World Wide Web, I refuse to waste keystrokes on every last detail here. Suffice it to say, the tweets mentioned horrible things befalling Jefferson's mother and sister. They referenced the Oklahoma City bombing. They even mentioned Sooner linebacker Austin Box, who died less than four months ago.

That's not trash talk.

That's trash.

Whitney Box, Austin's older sister, tweeted to Jefferson.

Box: “Not gonna lie, it is taking everything in my power not to tweet that guy … I don't understand how ppl can be like that.”

Jefferson: “I'm in shock. Like (I don't know) wat to do … ”

Box: “Rise above. Austin would've laughed at him. He's not worth your time.”

It's easy to talk about turning a blind eye to such dregs.

Letter The Oklahoma Daily received from FSU student leaders

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by Jenni Carlson
Columnist
Jenni Carlson, a sports columnist at The Oklahoman since 1999, came by her love of sports honestly. She grew up in a sports-loving family in Kansas. Her dad coached baseball and did color commentary on the radio for the high school football...
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