Oh, the irony... Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, a 1985 Michigan graduate and vocal supporter and booster of the Michigan Athletic Department, committed an NCAA recruiting violation by tweeting at 2014 Michigan football recruit QB Wilton Speight and newly committed super star WR 2015 prospect George Campbell.
Campbell, widely considered the best offensive football recruit in America, regardless of class, surprised the college football and recruiting community over the weekend by committing to the Wolverines over Florida, over a month before the start of his junior season of high school football.
Update 7/29/2013 4:03 PM ET Contact to Twitter's PR team for a statement was not immediately responded to. National media has picked up this story in the last hour.
Speight, the QB recruit for the Wolverines in this senior years class, welcomed Campbell to Michigan by tweeting out a photo of Campbell and U-M coach Brady Hoke as seen to the right.
Costolo, who has been CEO of Twitter since 2010, responded to the tweet of a rising high school senior by commenting back to both Speight and Campbell with the following: "@WiltonSpeight @GeorgeCampbell0 amazing! #goblue". The tweet got a response from both Speight and Campbell commending Costolo for his work at Twitter.
Now, the average football fan will look at the above tweets and think "no big deal" and so do we... but rules are rules and Costolo should clearly know the rules that the NCAA has put in place to guide communication to high school athletes on his own social network, especially given his position as a high profile executive and athletic booster and supporter for Michigan. Nothing will likely come of this, perhaps Michigan will report it to the NCAA and Costolo will apologize, but it is unusually ironic regardless.
For more info on the NCAA rules on boosters contacting recruits on social media, see below:
“NCAA rules do not allow comments about possible recruits on an institution’s social media page or a page belonging to someone affiliated with the institution. In addition, these pages cannot feature photos of prospects and messages cannot be sent to recruits using these social media technologies other than through their e-mail function.”
Read more on the NCAA booster contact rules here: The booster rules
Per NCAA rules, a booster must adhere by the following rules:
What are examples of impermissible recruiting activities?
As a booster, you may not:
• Contact a prospect in-person on-campus or off campus.
• Contact a prospect by telephone, email, Internet or letter.
• Provide gifts or free or reduced-cost services to a prospect or the prospect’s relatives or guardian.
Michigan has been the subject of similar violations before when former WR Roy Roundtree tweeted at a recruit in March 2012.
On May 4th, 2013 - Costolo gave the commencement speech at graduation at Michigan, seen below: