Minuteman’s halftime tweets get national attention
Bowling Green running back John Pettigrew, right, carries the ball as University of Massachusetts defensive back D'Metrius Williams defends at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough on Saturday. Bowling Green won 24-0. (AP Photo Purchase photo reprints »
University of Massachusetts coach Charley Molnar yells to his team in the second quarter against Bowling Green at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough on Saturday. Bowling Green won 24-0. (AP Photo) Purchase photo reprints »
Bowling Green linebacker Dwayne Woods (5) celebrates with teammate Gabe Martin, left, after Woods intercepted a pass and ran it back for a touchdown in the third quarter of an NCAA college football game against Massachusetts in Foxborough, Mass., Saturday, Oct. 20, 2012. Bowling Green won 24-0. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer) Purchase photo reprints »
FOXBOROUGH — Four days after the University of Massachusetts got a surge of positive publicity from a YouTube video showing coach Charley Molnar awarding two players scholarships, the school got some negative attention via Twitter on Saturday.
True freshman cornerback D’Metrius Williams had a breakout performance with seven tackles and three pass breakups. But at halftime, with the Minutemen losing 7-0, Williams apparently got on his phone and retweeted several tweets praising his play, including one that also criticized the offense, and then posted:
“IM OUT HERE BALLIN’ .. 2nd half bouta get started time too qet mo’ money”
After a follower of his posted “Stop Tweeting during halftime,” Williams responded, “lol don’t tell coach! ahaha but im done now.”
But the tweet was retweeted quickly and spread nationally getting attention from Yahoo Sports columnist Dan Wetzel and Deadspin.
“Immature on his part obviously,” Molnar said. “We’ve already discussed it as a staff policy. I’ll take the blame on that and say I just didn’t drive it home enough. I guess I’ve got to say it every week, ‘Don’t tweet during halftime.’ But he did. I’ll deal with it.
“We have guys make mistakes every day,” he added. “There’s mistakes on every play out there. . . . He made a mistake and he’ll suffer the consequences, but it’s not a death sentence by him on any stretch.”
Williams erased the tweet after the game and tweeted an apology — “dumb mistake by me … I apologize !” — and then explained that he wasn’t making reference to actually getting paid.
“when i said “ qet mo money “ ... it means qo on the field and make plays ... not actually qet paid !”
Molnar did not make a big deal of the incident in his postgame press conference.
UMass does not have a written policy governing use of social media by athletes, according to John Sinnett, the assistant director for media relations.
ATTENDANCE – The homecoming game drew 10,846 fans, the largest crowd at Gillette Stadium since the Minutemen’s home opener against Indiana on Sept. 8.
Former UMass All-American punter Christian Koegel, who is currently on the MTV reality show “Real World-Road Rules Challenge,” was at the game.
HELMETS – For homecoming, the Minutemen wore a different decal on their helmets featuring the 1990s logo with a large “U” followed by the smaller “Mass” all in script.
Matt Vautour can be reached at email@example.com. Follow UMass coverage on Twitter at twitter.com/GazetteUMass. Get UMass coverage delivered in your Facebook news feed at www.facebook.com/GazetteUMassCoverage.