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Oklahoma football: Bob Stoops knows football, but he understands little about Twitter and its trappings

If the Oklahoma football coach knew, he wouldn't have said what he did a week ago at Big 12 Media Days.
by Jenni Carlson Modified: July 30, 2013 at 10:00 am •  Published: July 29, 2013

Costolo is also the CEO of Twitter.

As funny as that story is, it's tame compared to some of the things that recruits endure on Twitter. Constant tweets that border on harassment. Amorous tweets that border on stalking.

But it's when a kid picks a school that thing can get truly disturbing.

Jabrill Peppers, one of the top players in this year's recruiting class, committed to Michigan earlier this year. When the cornerback did, it brought out some ugly comments.

One tweeter with a Florida logo as his avatar wrote, “Michigan sucks and you suck at rapping punk”, then added some profanity for good measure.

Damian Prince, a five-star offensive lineman from Maryland, received death threats from some fans. He told The Washington Post that some sent pictures flashing guns.

“If you don't come to our school,” one threatened, “we'll kill you and your family.”

“We know where you live,” another said.

Every college football fan who's on Twitter isn't evil or kooky or some combination thereof, but unfortunately, there are plenty who are. And when their target becomes a 17- or 18-year-old high school recruit, it can get ugly.

So, why would Stoops encourage his fans to jump into the cesspool?

Lest you think his comments were meant to be sarcastic, I asked one of our reporters who was there when Stoops' comments were made. He said that the coach seemed quite serious.

Murdock said something similar when asked via Twitter.

And hey, when have we ever known Stoops to joke with the media about much of anything? He'd just as soon joke with us as get a root canal, so it stands to reason that he was being serious about fans reaching out to recruits on Twitter.

Which brings me back to my belief that Stoops can't possibly understand what he advocated.

Unlock that Twitter account, Bob, and I bet you might think again about unleashing fans on a bunch of teenagers.

Jenni Carlson: Jenni can be reached at (405) 475-4125. Like her at, follow her at or view her personality page at

by Jenni Carlson
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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