Social Media and Recruiting
If you can Google and research the college teams that interest you, they can Google you too! Don’t make the mistake of thinking they will only look at your athletic skills–they are just as interested in your character as your 40-yard-dash time.
One of the easiest ways for a college coach to gain insight into your character is to check out your social media pages. When they look you up on Facebook are they going to find a lot of pictures with you at parties and up to no good? Are your status updates complaining about your coaches or teammates? Do you “like” questionable materials and brands?
Do You Know Who’s Following You on Twitter?
If a coach follows you on Twitter what are you talking about? Are you always negative? Do you use bad language in your tweets?
All of these things will be frowned upon by a coach and could lead to them taking you off their recruiting boards. Not only are coaches building a team of talent, but they are building a team of athletes that can work together.
Simple Steps to Follow
1. Keep it polite and positive. Don’t use bad language or say anything negative about your team, family or coaches.
2. Keep it clean and respectful. Don’t post pictures of yourself drinking, half-naked or doing stupid stuff.
3. Stop your endorsements. While there are not hard and fast NCAA rules about Facebook or Twitter, if you “like” restaurants, clothing lines, companies, etc. this could be misconstrued as an endorsement which could harm your amateur status.
4. Set your privacy settings to Fully Private. If anyone can access and post on your pages then you don’t have any control on the things that people can associate you with.
5. Unfriend or Unfollow anyone with questionable content. Have you ever heard “guilty by association”? You may have a clean page or only tweet positive messages, but if you follow or friend people who would be looked upon poorly it could impact you negatively as well.
Stay Connected, Be Smart
Social media can be fun and a great way to be connected to your friends and family, but remember people are watching and judging you. Follow the above rules and you should have nothing to worry about regarding your social media.