Rick Pitino's recent comments on social media -- which first became a topic of national discussion when they were taken out of context by Fox Sports Live -- have caused quite the stir this week.
Pitino qualified his statements on the "Mike & Mike" show Wednesday morning, but stood by his assertion that social media is "poison" for his players. Naturally, John Calipari called into the same program a day later and stated his disagreement with both Pitino and Michigan State's Tom Izzo, who has also spoken out against social media.
First of all, this is no disrespect. I respect all the coaches you've mentioned. They know nothing about social media. Nothing. They don't do it. They feel it's another job. What I'm trying to tell our players, and we train them, we bring in professional people, we talk about it, we oversee them, we watch what they put out. If they put out something dumb, we talk to them and tell them ‘why? why would you do that?' We also tell them if you're into reading the responses, don't go on Twitter. Twitter is an opportunity, Facebook is an opportunity to say what you feel, to try to pick people up, to try to be positive, to try to add something to society, to try to let people see you transparently.
I always say, hey, look. I'm not going to hold my team back from Twitter, Facebook, but I'm going to teach them. I'm gonna use it for a positive. And, I don't read one response on Twitter or Facebook. I don't read one. So, if you come back, there are a lot of bullies and haters on Twitter, I don't read them, I don't see them. I give out information. I'm transparent to our fans. I tell them how I'm feeling. I talk about the last couple practices. There are things that I want my players to read that I'll put out. I also have things that we do that only go to our players that I put out and I want them to see here, videos and different things. Social media, for anyone to say ‘don't do it, it's crazy,' I don't know what you're talking about.
I'm excited for the day Calipari starts calling into shows to take thinly veiled shots at coconut water.