Kevin Fite, Oklahoma State's associate athletic director of compliance, addressed one fan directly in September when he noticed illegal contact with a recruit.
“Cease from contacting our prospective student-athletes via Twitter or any other means per NCAA rules,” Fite tweeted at the offender.
After a terse exchange, Fite instructed all official OSU athletics Twitter accounts to block that particular fan.
The NCAA's definition for a “Representative of Athletics Interests” — laid out in NCAA bylaw 13.02.14 — is fairly broad, which is why Fite would rather be safe than sorry.
“The threshold, I would say, is pretty thin,” Fite said. “Basically, no one can. Let their coaches do their job.”
More than a year ago, Oklahoma's compliance office hired Rob Robinson, a compliance coordinator whose duties largely involve monitoring social media.
Even with such a commitment to the cause, though, the OU athletics department still struggles with social media recruiting problems.
“That's the unfortunate part of the NCAA process,” said Jason Leonard, OU's executive director for athletic compliance. “We're working within a system that you can't do 100 percent.
“There is no, ‘Do X, Y and Z.' I wish there was. It'd be awesome. It'd make my job a lot easier. There are things that still occur here, that — even if we had 100 people on the compliance staff — we still can't catch it all.”