The GOOD, the BAD and the UGLY – Social Media Edition


Gone in 60 Seconds…or Less

Due to a camping trip with a lack of cell phone service–or technology for that matter–I wasn’t able to watch any football. I know, devastating! I asked for a satellite… the crew said no. Authentic camping it was.

So, I’ll be calling this my “bye week” and switching gears to something very prominent in sports right now: social media. As a professional athlete, Twitter is the best social media tool to connect and engage with your fans on a personal level.  That can be a good or bad thing (or an ugly thing).

Practice makes perfect, right? The same applies with Social Media.

You compose a tweet or Facebook post in roughly 60 seconds. After you hit send, the world is open and ready to judge you with a billion people on Facebook and 500 million on Twitter. Recently, athletes, coaches and even athlete’s family members have been the target of GOOD, BAD, and UGLY social media ethics.

THE GOOD
@LarryFitzgerald

The wide receiver for the Arizona Cardinals has a pretty good handle on how to make a powerful statement with Twitter. He’s always engaging with fans by RTs and keeps his posts primarily focused on football. During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Fitzgerald started a Twitter Campaign to raise funds. He tweeted,


This was great use of his notoriety and social media to spread awareness and raise funds for a charity near to his heart.

THE BAD
@lolojones

Sometimes it only takes one tweet to cause uproar. Olympic hurdler, Lolo Jones is very familiar with just that scenario. Early in October, Jones received a tweet from former Rutgers football player Eric LeGrand joking around about challenging her to a race. Jones didn’t notice LeGrand’s avatar of himself in a wheelchair and replied, “Get checked for a concussion. Clearly, u’ve been hit in the head… Cos u arnt beating a track athlete.” Jones was quickly told by other users of LeGrand’s injuries, she wrote:

Although LeGrand didn’t think it was a big deal and completely understood, the damage was done. The tweets were taken down and news articles were in the works.

THE UGLY

When ruckus is created by someone close to an athlete, the star still pays the consequences, even if they had no part in creating it. We can try and coach the athlete on proper social media techniques, but it looks like their families need it too!

During the Saints’ 28-13 win against the Eagles, Marcus Vick complained about the offensive line’s protection of his brother and wanted him out of Philadelphia. “Please trade my brother. We requesting out of Philly!!!! Please please please,” Marcus tweeted. The tweet was deleted from Marcus’s account.

“That’s not me,” Michael said. “If it doesn’t come from me … I’m in the middle of a full-fledged game. I don’t know what’s being said. I don’t know what’s going on. But I definitely got it corrected. We definitely had a serious heart-to-heart conversation.” Marcus later stated his apology on Twitter.


Twitter is only one aspect of social media, but can be used as a great resource for athletes if you know how to correctly use it. In 60 seconds or less you have the ability to express your opinion, start a conversation, raise money for a charity, and make mistakes. It’s up to the player on how they want to have their brand portrayed across the web.

By: Dana Bakich

Dana Bakich is the Founder/President of iSportsWhisper, a social media consulting company focused on the sports industry.

The GOOD, the BAD, and the UGLY – Collection of Sports From Throughout the Weekend

THE GOOD
UCF vs. SMU
42-17

Everyone may have their playful banter on the UCF Knights, but look out–the nation’s second largest university is on the move. During their homecoming game Saturday, the Knights again showcased why they have earned their spot in moving to the Big East Conference next season. UCF remains undefeated in Conference USA (5-0), moving their record to (7-2) overall. 

In Saturday’s beat down, the Knights challenged the Mustangs on both sides of the ball. With constant penalties against SMU, UCF was able to take advantage and put points on the scoreboard. Latavius Murray was on fire with 155 yards on 23 carries and two touchdowns. After Saturday’s matchup, Murray became the ninth Knight to have at least 2,000 rushing yards.

This game was special for UCF Knights on a more personal level as well.  Players wore “RP” stickers on their helmets in honor of former defensive lineman, Robert Pritchard, who was a member of the team from 2008-2011 until he suffered a massive stroke earlier this year. He was recognized on the field with warm welcoming from UCF fans.

With their momentum, I see the Knights ending their experience in C-USA with a Championship.

THE BAD
Kentucky vs. Vanderbilt
0-40

Wow, talk about a historically bad loss for the Wildcats.  A forty-to-nothing tail whooping on their home field against a mediocre Vanderbilt team.  I know Kentucky isn’t a football school, but a shutout? At home? By Vanderbilt? Kentucky hasn’t been shut out at home for over twenty years and Vanderbilt hasn’t scored 40 in an SEC game since 2005. Talk about a perfect storm for a bad day.  It was so bad, in fact, that the 1-7 Wildcats fired head coach Joker Phillips.

Now, the team has to try and pull out a win in Knoxville to avoid a winless SEC record for the first time since 2000.  Talk about taking a step back.  Whoever takes over for Joker will have his hands full.  But on the bright side, at least the new coach has nowhere to go but up. 

THE UGLY
Saints vs. Eagles
28-13

What were you expecting from these teams on MNF? With lackluster records, I’m glad at least one team showed up to play.  The only good record was Drew Brees’s perfect 8-0 lifetime record on Monday Night Football, which he kept spotless with a win over the hopeless Eagles.

As the blogs and news articles read, “New Orleans fans excited after Monday night win.” And they should be!  The Eagles were picked to win by many as the Saints has the worst defense in the league (giving up over 400 yards a game) and this was viewed as a ”must win” game for head coach Andy Reid and quarterback Michael Vick, who are both on the hot seat.

Although the Saints defense still gave up more than 400 yards, Vick was his usual mistake laden self.  A quarterback that, like Tony Romo has decent stats and makes great plays, but also can’t seem win and does things that leave you scratching your head.  Although he got sacked seven times, Vick made some mental mistakes that cost his team.  He got picked off from the 5 yard line for a 99-yard touchdown return on a questionable pass, and was stopped five total times in the red zone.  The Eagles had several opportunities to make it close at the end of the game, but it just felt like they didn’t have the mental toughness to do the things necessary for a win. After a four game losing streak at the beginning of the season, the Saints fans are thrilled to have won three of their last four.

I hope the Saints got their fill of excitement because next week the undefeated Atlanta Falcons visit the Saints at home.  As for the Eagles, they have the perfect matchup against Dallas, who also has the reputation for giving away games.  The Dallas vs. Eagles game could very well make this list next week, as I could see both Romo and Vick making their usual mistakes.  It might just come down to who makes the least amount of dumb plays.

By: Dana Bakich

The GOOD, the BAD and the UGLY – Collection From Sports Throughout the Weekend


The GOOD
Giants vs. Cowboys
(29-24)

I was rooting for the underdog on this one.

The Cowboys lost to the Giants on Sunday by a finger. Dez Bryant’s finger, to be exact.

With early mistakes, six turnovers, and Dez Bryant’s fingertips just crossing the white paint, the Cowboys lost a heartbreaking game at home Sunday evening.

Dallas was down 23-0 in the first half with four turnovers in the first 16 minutes. The Giants completed two touchdowns and three field goals before Dallas even sniffed the end zone.

Then Tony Romo decided to show up.

Dallas shut out the Giants offense late in the second and entire third quarter taking the lead (24-23). Twitter and Facebook flooded conversation with the momentum of the game changing to Dallas. The Giants were unable to score a touchdown, but took the lead again (29-24) with two field goals.

With seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, Romo connected with Bryant for what the Cowboys thought was a TD to win the game. With Bryant’s fingertips slightly out of bounds, the touchdown was overturned. Although Romo put up 437 passing yards, over twice as many as Eli Manning recorded for the Giants, the Cowboys still managed to lose and are 0-4 at home versus the Giants.

These are the nail-biting games NFL fans crave.

The BAD
Oregon vs. Colorado
(70-14)

This box score is just hard to look at.

Oregon might have some of the wackiest uniforms, but their team was solid Saturday afternoon against Colorado. Oregon scored 28 points in the first and second quarters; going into the half 56-0. Colorado completed a whopping 95 passing yards between quarterbacks Hirschman and Webb.

The BAD for Colorado:

  • The Buffaloes now officially sit 124th out of 124 FBS teams when it comes to scoring defense.
  • As a team, Oregon had 617 yards of total offense. (Where was the D?!)

Oregon left the Buffs in pure embarrassment.

The UGLY
Georgia vs. Florida
(17-9)

The legendary game between the Florida Gators and Georgia Bulldogs took place this past weekend in Jacksonville, Florida at EverBank Field.

The two teams combined for a total of 24 penalties and nine turnovers. UGLY.

The Gators accounted for six turnovers; with the final fumble costing them the game. The play that will be remembered is Jeff Driskel’s throw to Jordan Reed, resulting in a fumble late in the fourth. With tears streaming down his face, Reed felt his mistake cost his team the game, and possibly a shot at a national championship. There were many mistakes that led to the Gators falling out of the Top 5 in the BCS

I chose this matchup as the UGLY for the sole fact that we expected so much more out of the No. 2 and No.10 ranked teams. This showcased how un-ready the Gators are for a possible SEC Championship versus dominant Alabama.

Florida’s Jordan Reed was understandibly upset after unbeaten Florida lost to Georgia on Saturday, possibly derailing their hopes for a national championship.

This was certainly not a “Cocktail Party” for the Florida Gators.

By: Dana Bakich

The GOOD, the BAD, and the UGLY – Collection From Sports Throughout the Weekend

 

The GOOD
UF vs. SCAR & ALA vs. TENN
(44-11)             (44-13)

This week’s GOOD, was a clear tie between Florida vs. South Carolina and Alabama vs. Tennessee. How could I not put together the No. 1 and No. 2 ranked teams with almost identical scores?

Gators vs. South Carolina
Video

Quick Stats:

  • South Carolina held the Gators to 29 yards and two first downs in the first half, but UF came out 21-6 because of three turnovers. 
  • Last October, there were no wins for this Florida team. UF struggled with losses to Alabama, LSU, Auburn and Georgia.
  • South Carolina completed, or I should say didn’t complete with minus -1 yards in the third.

Crimson Tide vs. Volunteers
Video

Quick Stats:

  • AJ McCarron threw for a career-high 306 yards and four touchdowns
  •  McCarron has 16 touchdown tosses with no interceptions this season.
  • Tyler Bray went 13 of 27 for 184 yards with two interceptions and no touchdown passes for Tennessee.

The BAD
Saints vs. Bucs
(35-28)

Sunday afternoon was a toss-up in the last two minutes between both the Bucs and Giants games. Four teams fighting for the win.

For the BAD, I’ve chosen to focus on the Saints vs. Bucs game.

While watching the game, my continuous rant, “Come on Tampa Bay.” “Yes!!” “No!” And then the final, “What the #*%& was that call? You had this game!” What a disappointing loss for Tampa Bay on Sunday afternoon. The Bucs offense was the best I’ve seen thus far with 513 total yards and started off great with a 21-7 lead, but ended up allowing Drew Brees to collect 377 yards and four touchdowns.

With few seconds left, the Bucs offense got into the end zone. Freeman completed his first pass to Vincent Jackson to tie up the game once again, but was ruled out of bounds. Then, Freeman and Mike Williams connected on the last pass of the game to once again, catch the ball when he was pushed out of bounds. Cannons went off – but, oh wait. Just kidding Bucs fans, that one didn’t count either.

Maybe it was the creamsicle throwback uniforms that did them in?

Bucs are now (2-4) and will play the Vikings on the road Thursday.

The UGLY
FSU vs. Miami
(33-20)

Where should I start?

The first half was nothing sort of a sloppy disaster on both sides. First, Florida State racked up nine penalties, four fumbles, starting running back Chris Thompson got hit with a left knee injury and let’s not forget the fan running onto the field during a play…And Miami leaving the field twice before the clock ended leading into halftime. Whew. This game was nothing short of entertaining.

Despite a horrible first half, FSU stayed on top heading into half time 13-10.

The game stayed close with FSU 16, Miami 13 in the third, but not for long. Florida State pulled it together in the fourth with two touchdowns and one field goal resulting in another win.

“Anytime you can come to Miami and beat Miami, that’s a good day,” Fisher said. “I don’t care what you say.”

By: Dana Bakich

The GOOD, the BAD and the UGLY – Collection from sports throughout the weekend

The GOOD 
Packers vs. Texans - (42-24)

Sunday Night Tweet from @SInow:

Aaron Rodgers became a trending topic Sunday evening during the Packers vs. Texans matchup. The Packers could have played any team Sunday night and won. Why? Because we finally saw them play all four quarters. With a (2-3) record against the unmatched Texans, someone had to do work. Aaron Rodgers was able to help out with his six touchdowns, no interceptions and 338 passing yards. Jordy Nelson showed up on the receiving end, connecting with Rodgers for three of the six touchdowns. After the upsetting loss to Indianapolis last week, this was a huge win for Green Bay.

“This is just a team that has a lot of pride in our locker room,” Rodgers said. “I said it this week, there’s not any quit in that locker room. It’s almost better when people are doubting us a little bit, I think. We kind of band together. People tried to pull us apart this week and we stuck together and found our motivation.”

The Texans saw their first loss of the season, leaving the Atlanta Falcons to be the only team in the NFL undefeated (6-0).

The BAD 
Ohio State vs. Indiana  - (52-49)

DEFENSE! DEFENSE! I don’t think you heard much of that chant during this heavily offensive game between Ohio State and Indiana. Ohio State (7-0) barely held onto their undefeated season with a multitude of crazy scenarios during Saturday’s game.

Scenario #1: Ohio State’s fullback, Zach Boren filled in at linebacker and lead the team with eight tackles – Interesting switch Urban Meyer.

Scenario #2: The Buckeyes got their punt blocked which led to a Indiana TD, but a few a few plays later déjà vu took place with Indiana having their punt blocked and Ohio completing a touchdown.

Ohio State, an unranked team at the beginning of the season, is now registered at No. 7 in the AP Polls.

The UGLY 
Ole Miss vs. Auburn - (41-20)

Auburn cannot seem to find their momentum this season.

With a (1-5, 0-4) record, the Tigers are desperate to put up some points and take a win. Auburn’s offense scored only four touchdowns in their four SEC games. Although Auburn lead (24-20) in the fourth, they just couldn’t keep up. The Tigers rank 115th in scoring offense and 116th in total offense. Who won a national title two years ago?

But, hey there’s a positive: Ole Miss finally got to end their 16-game SEC losing streak.

By: Dana Bakich