Brady Hoke explains how Michigan catfished its own players
The Wolverines have held such meetings before. But this one was a little different.
They "catfished" their own players.
"Before he came in, we gave him 20 Facebook accounts of guys on our team," coach Brady Hoke said earlier this month while speaking with hundreds of the state's high school football coaches. "He had his assistant -- she tried to talk to our guys. 'Hey, what are ya doin'?' Whatever it might be.
"Well, two months later we're in a team meeting and we're on the topic of what you put out there in the cyber universe ... you should have seen 115 guys when that young lady -- she was hot, now; a very, very nice looking young lady -- when she walked into that meeting room, and the guys looking at each other.
"Because some of them didn't use their heads when communicating back and forth with that young lady."
Michigan has educated its players on social media for years, but this was a new way to drive home the potential trappings of online networking.
And, sure enough, it wasn't much longer before Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o would bring "catfishing" into the national conscious.
Te'o says he was part of an elaborate hoax in which he had a mostly online relationship with Lennay Kekua, who turned out not to exist. Ronaiah Tuiasosopo has since admitted to being the voice behind Kekua, who Te'o thought died just hours after his grandmother last year.
The situation has created a firestorm for Te'o, whose story went national during his Heisman Trophy runner-up season.
Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon, speaking in Toledo on Friday morning, said Michigan catfhished its own players to prevent such an episode.
According to Eleven Warriors' Kyle Rowland, Brandon said some of the players' responses to the woman were "wholly inappropriate."
Hoke said the players learned from the incident.
"The tweeting deal, I still don't understand, to be honest with ya, and the different things the guys will do," Hoke said. "But, my point is this: Be aware of it. Watch what your kids are doing."
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