When one of the winter’s numerous snowstorms forced the postponement of a Mt. Vernon tennis preseason meeting last week, coach Gabe Muterspaugh didn’t rush to notify his players by phone call. He didn’t text them. Or send an email.
Nope. He tweeted.
Muterspaugh is one of an ever increasing number of local high school head coaches utilizing the convenience of Twitter to keep in touch with players and fans, among other uses, including keeping up with how opposing teams are faring on any given night.
Launched in 2006, Twitter is a free online networking service, usually accessed via smartphone, that allows users to send out messages of up to 140 characters. Whoever “follows” the users can view the tweet automatically on their own timeline.
In an age where seemingly everyone’s (especially teenagers’) cell phone is rarely out of arm’s reach, Twitter is a simple, yet effective, method for coaches to reach multiple eyeballs at once.
“Twitter is here to stay,” Muterspaugh said of the service, which has nearly 650 million users worldwide. “I love it. I use it to keep all my followers (those who support and those who don’t) updated on MV tennis, and sometimes what my 2-year-old twins are doing.”
Jared Manning, when he is not tweeting about his beloved St. Louis Cardinals, sends schedule reminders or congratulations to his basketball and soccer teams.
The Greenfield-Central boys soccer head coach and JV boys basketball coach recently posted a team picture of G-C’s Hancock County Tourney ninth-grade basketball champs.
His background image is another team pic — this one of his sectional title winning soccer squad from the fall.
“It seems that most of my players have a twitter account and check it quite frequently, so it is an easy way for me to communicate with them without having to initiate a group text or create an email list,” Manning said. “We also have a one call system that we use to make special announcements, but Twitter seems to reach more people and much faster.”