Right before the season, Fairfield head coach Sydney Johnson made an important decision outside of his basketball program.
He joined Twitter.
It was an idea he had considered in the past and was encouraged to in the past, but on Oct. 7 he decided to join the social media platform under the handle @CoachJStags. Johnson said he credits Jon Solomon, who ran the now-defunct PrincetonBasketball.com, who joked to him several years ago that he should start his own Twitter account.
“It just felt like the right time,” Johnson said. “I’m a lot more engaged with my guys. They have Twitter, Facebook and all that kind of stuff, Instagram and Snapchat. Recruiting-wise, recruits you’re kind of following what they’re doing and I just thought it was a great idea as a whole lot of other coaches feel that it’s just a great idea to let people know what’s going on inside the program something.”
The head coach of the Stags, in his fifth season with the program, has started to tweet out not just team news, but he wants to use the social media platform to give a peek behind the scenes into the program. He said he wants to bring fans inside the team, after games he’ll deliver a coaches’ report as well as one of his own ideas: his top five players of the game, which came to him as an idea of how to reflect on a game in 140 characters or fewer.
“When I walk away from a game, I’m not trying to get too analytical, but what did we want to try to get done and what’s our takeaway,” Johnson said. “Each guy is so important. We get so caught up in wins and losses and this and that, and it’s like how good is each guy getting from day to day and game to game, so that top five really sticks out to me.”
“We’ve had guys who, we lost to Carolina by about a pretty good deficit, but there were times where we played terrific and certain guys played really well and that’s a step forward for them. That top five for me, it kind of comes from that, just always recognizing the individual wins that guys are getting along the way. I think those are important for fans and recruits to understand the individual wins we’re getting between games, so that’s why I try to shoot that stuff out from time to time.”
Ryan Restivo wrote the America East conference preview for the 2015-16 Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook. He covers the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, the America East conference among others for Big Apple Buckets. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @ryanarestivo or contact Ryan at rrestivo[at]nycbuckets.com.