Michael Rand started RandBall with hopes that he could keep lies from conquering the minds of the weak. So far, he's only succeeded in using the word "redacted" a lot. He welcomes suggestions, news tips, links of pure genius, and pictures of pets in Halloween costumes here, though he already knows he will regret that last part.
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Commenter RandBallsStu (branding!) each week tracks down a former Minnesota sports figure about whom you might have otherwise forgotten. Stu?
America has the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) and the UCP (ultimate clutch players). One is mixed martial artists, and the other is quarterbacks of the NFL. They all are athletic warriors who are extremely determined to win. My favorite in the UFC is Georges St-Pierre. My favorite in the UCP is Tim Tebow. I know what you are thinking: Tebow has been in the NFL for only three years. True, but Tim's 2011 season with the Denver Broncos was one of the most remarkable in football history.
Yes, that season in which Tebow finished 31st in the NFL in Total QBR out of 34 qualifying QBs was certainly remarkable. THESE ARE THE THINGS THE LIBERAL MEDIA DOESN'T WANT YOU TO KNOW.
I've heard the critics say Tebow has poor technical skills, but the truth is that Tim is a natural leader, an amazingly gifted football player, an inspiration to his team and the possessor of intense determination and strategy to bring any team to victory — no matter what the odds. One can improve technique, but leadership is innate. That is why I believe that Tebow could be a superstar and legend in the NFL.
If he could beat out Mark Sanchez ...
All that is needed now is for the management of a football team to have the vision and faith to watch Tebow turn around the team. I guarantee they would see positive results. I have been an athlete all my life, being a six-time undefeated world middleweight champion in the martial arts, and I know a winner when I see one. Tim Tebow is a winner — plain and simple!
There you have it.
This would certainly put an end to the conspiracy theories, wouldn't it? And you can't argue that you wouldn't watch it.
How to make the NBA draft lottery better. Have the owners of all 14 teams race 1 lap around a track.Order is determined by where they finish— Blair Walsh (@BlairWalsh3) May 23, 2013
I think it would be must see TV. Owners would have incentive to be fit/in shape.— Blair Walsh (@BlairWalsh3) May 23, 2013
We participated in a panel discussion Tuesday morning that focused, in part, on social media. We talked about how it is evolving, how it is used in media and how much of using it ultimately comes down to common sense.
It seems there are daily reminders of the evolution and common sense part of it, with the Twins' official Twitter account giving us another case study on Wednesday. As part of a back-and-forth with the Braves' official account, there was the following exchange: The Twins' account tweeted a picture of a Kent Hrbek jersey hanging in Atlanta's park. The Braves responded with "Leave it there, we'll SWEEP it up for you!" in reference to Atlanta taking all three games of the series. The Twins responded with this:
The tweet drew quite a bit of reaction, with nearly 500 retweets and more than 350 favorites as of this morning. It also caused plenty of folks on Twitter to wonder if it was appropriate to talk trash on two levels: Should the Twins boast of a World Series title 22 years ago when they're in the midst of an eight-game losing streak ... and should the official account engage in what could be construed as banter but also could be taken for trash talk?
Our take again takes us back to that grey area of common sense and understanding the moment -- which, in the world of every second matters, is what Twitter is all about. Regardless of whether the Twins had won eight in a row or lost eight in a row, we think the final tweet might have seemed out of place (it would have needed to be amended, of course, to read something like "after we're done SWEEPING you, we'll dust this off"). But it seemed particularly tone deaf based on the timing. That was a memorable World Series, one of the best in MLB history, but the Twitter audience that is seeing the tweet is frustrated after a blowout loss. They are in no mood to brag. And bringing up glory from a generation ago is a cheap form of retort -- akin to Packers fans in 2009 boasting of past Super Bowls as Brett Favre was dominating for the Vikings. The fact that it came as part of a back-and-forth makes it a little more palatable, but again much of the audience only focuses in on the final tweet.
We were curious, though, to hear what folks with the Twins thought of it. We had a good e-mail exchange Wednesday evening with team President Dave St. Peter -- an active tweeter himself -- about his take. Here is an excerpt of what he had to say after looking at the exchange:
We see it as playful banter with the Braves and a bit of levity with the rivals from 1991. That said, it’s my assumption that the fan “reaction” you refer to is largely coming from the Twins fan base. Is this correct? If so, I assume the playful banter with the Braves has some Twins fans irritated that the Twins are “living in the past” instead of being committed to win in 2013. The reality is that the message you referred to in your e-mail was a lighthearted response to a specific lighthearted tweet sent to the Twins by the Braves. Nothing more, nothing less.
Perhaps the lesson learned here is that while it’s a wonderful communications tool, Twitter has its shortcomings. Many times people see a single tweet and react without having full context or perspective. To that end, the Twins response to the Braves had unintended consequences (mainly setting off a group of frustrated Twins fans). Rest assured, everyone with the Twins organization is frustrated with the current losing streak. Moreover, we fully understand our past on-field successes mean little to a new generation of fans who want to see their Twins bring home another World Championship.
We agree with St. Peter on many points and really don't have a problem with an official account having some personality, but we'd still say this: Even as part of a response to another tweet, it strikes the wrong note given the current state of the franchise. A tweet with more humility would have made a world of difference.
Your thoughts, please, in the comments.
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