One of the allures of Twitter is that you're only an @ symbol away from sending a message to some of your favorite celebrities, politicians, and sports stars. Usually those messages are positive, but sometimes the turn ugly. Chances are the star might not ever see it, but Miami Hurricanes QB Jacory Harris received a disparaging, racially charged comment through the website after last week's loss to second-ranked Ohio State. While coach Randy Shannon says he didn't order the team to delete their Twitter accounts the message is a startling example of why Shannon's anti-Twitter stance might not have been such a bad idea.
"You see some things and you get kind of hurt, because it's your fans that say the things," Harris said at a press conference yesterday. "They're the ones that before the game wrote you some encouraging message. And then after the game tell you that they don't want a black quarterback here. ....I know who they were because it's Twitter."
Harris discusses the racist Tweet in the video below starting around the 1:50 mark.
"It is disheartening," Harris elaborated. "It's something you look at and it kind of brings you to tears, but at the same time you know it's just a comment and there will be no steps taken after that. That's that person's opinion. It's just something you've got to live with. I don't read them all. There's too many to read. But I just scrolled through and I guess that was the one I picked to read and it was the wrong one."
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Coach Shannon said he didn't issue the ban on Twitter because of that message, but did say he wanted the team to be free from distractions.
"It hurt him a lot," said teammate Marcus Fortson. "He never in his life would expect that to come from a fan, especially at UM, being in Coral Gables, how diverse it is down here. He didn't really tell me what happened. He just said a lot of stuff was going on from Twitter, but he didn't get into any details."
The newly Twitter-free 'Canes were off this weekend, but head up to Pitt next week in an attempt to regain momentum after the disappointing loss to OSU.