Wednesday, December 09, 2009

RT @ndCoachingSearch. All the news that fits to tweet | by Pat

You may notice we haven't been throwing up every rumor that hits the wire this coaching search, unlike five years ago when we documented the media mentions of Meyer, Hawkins (hey, I actually got something right!), Shanahan, Alvarez, Fassel, Petrino, Magino, and ultimately, Charlie Weis. Part of the reason is time, but part of it is that we learned our lesson about running after every rumor that hits a message board.

To be fair, it can be entertaining (more so in retrospect) and Keith over at Inside the Irish has done a fantastic job detailing the day to day ups and downs. But ND fans could sue for whiplash with the way that rumors have jumped up and then suddenly reversed course the past few days.

One of the perfect examples of this has been the involement of Twitter to the latest ND coaching search. Poised to become the 2009 equivalent of 2001's Flight Tracker, fans are monitoring twitter accounts for even faster and less relaible rumors than those that show up on message boards or media blogs. The events of Tuesday highlighted just what is fascinatin, and at the same time, maddening, about the latest social media tool being used by coaches who still don't all understand it. Let's look at the timeline.

  • On Tuesday, Kelly denies any sort of interview via Twitter.
  • Just over two hours later, Gelehrt retracts his statement and confirms that it was in fact Kelly looking for a good reuben sandwich.
  • ND fans wonder just what is going on.
A couple of the major issues facing Twitter as it attempts to become even more ingrained in our business culture is their verification process and the security of a medium that is instant and removes nearly all of the normal media or lawyer buffers prevalent in big business. But that's more of a topic for a new media blog. The focus here is that nature still abhors a vacuum, especially during a coaching search and Twitter has added to the cacophony of voices all shouting conflicting reports at the same time.

The message here remains the same. Don't believe what you read on the internet. (except that last sentence. You can believe that one) and sit tight. There are still too many rumors (now with 50% more Edsall!) and not enough people who actually know what is going on talking. Conventional wisdom is that ND is close to a decision, but conventional wisdom doesn't bat 1.000% during Notre Dame coaching searches. I just wonder which Twitter account will finally break the news of our new coach when it doesn happen.