Kansas Football Coach Tweets Angrily About Daily Kansan Coverage of Team

Update: Kansan Football Reporter Warned About Asking Questions at Press Conference with Head Coach

Charlie Weis was wicked mad late last week.  The head coach of the University of Kansas football team lashed out at The University Daily Kansan in a 140-character burst of righteous anger.  The tweet spurred national attention and a public scolding from some members of the press.

Since the start of the season, the Kansan, KU’s student newspaper, has aggressively– and accurately– covered the many woes of the one-win Jayhawks football squad.  In an issue published Friday, editors provided preview coverage of a conference road game between KU and its in-state rival, the Kansas State University Wildcats.

The full-page cover graphic accompanying the main story in the issue displays a tiny, fearful Jayhawk hugging a goalpost, while a large, muscular Wildcat races fearlessly toward the end zone.  The story’s headline, “Road Kill Ahead.”

Weis apparently did not care for the graphic, headline or related coverage.  In a tweet posted early Friday morning to his personal Twitter account @CoachWeisKansas, he shared, “Team slammed by our own school newspaper.  Amazing!  No problem with opponents paper or local media.  You deserve what you get!  But, not home!”

The micro-response earned hundreds of retweets.  It also revealed how little Weis knows about student journalism.

Oh, Charlie.  What you must understand: Student newspapers are not campus cheerleaders.  They are, at heart, objective observers.  By that standard, Weis and the football team have deserved all the editorial shellacking they have received.

The team is having a terrible season.  The Kansan has been correct in its coverage of that relative terribleness.  Staffers were also correct in their prediction of a tough outing against the Wildcats.  On Saturday, KSU defeated KU 56-16.

As CBS Sports blogger Jerry Hinnen explains, “[I]t’s not the Kansan‘s role to be kind– it’s to put out the most accurate, highest-quality paper it can, and there’s no denying that picture is an entirely accurate summation of the two programs’ current standing. . . . If Weis really wants better treatment from the student newspaper, we have a simple suggestion: Don’t lose to Rice and Northern Illinois.”

USA TODAY sports writer Paul Myerberg agrees, noting, “The University Daily Kansan has won two consecutive College Newspaper of the Year awards (circulation over 30,000 division) from the College Newspaper Business & Advertising Managers.  Keep up the good work– the newspaper, that is.  Weis needs to win more games.”

For his part, Weis quickly posted a less simmering– but still self-righteous– follow-up tweet.  It offers a partial explanation for his anger.  As he wrote, “I personally could care less.  You are what [you] are.  On the other hand, if I don’t support the players good or bad, who will??”

Related

Stony Brook Student Magazine’s Funny Football Tweets Lead to Censorship Threat

Comments
4 Responses to “Kansas Football Coach Tweets Angrily About Daily Kansan Coverage of Team”
  1. “Oh, Charlie. What you must understand: Student newspapers are not campus cheerleaders. They are, at heart, objective observers.”

    Oh how I wish that were true. For example, too many student newspapers still use ‘school colors’, no matter how horrible they look on the Web, or use exclamation points in Twitter sports updates when ‘their team’ scores.

    • Dan says:

      Michael- Good to hear from you. Been a while. :) I agree with both your observations but see each of them more as traditional identifiers than hometown bias-drivers. Dan

  2. “Oh, Charlie. What you must understand: Student newspapers are not campus cheerleaders. They are, at heart, objective observers.”

    Oh how I wish that were true. For example, too many student newspapers still use ‘school colors’, no matter how horrible they look on the Web, or use exclamation points in Twitter sports updates when ‘their team’ scores.

Trackbacks
Check out what others are saying...
  1. [...] and student-athlete injuries.  Heck, University of Kansas head football coach Charlie Weis does not believe the KU student newspaper should provide any negative coverage of his dismal gridiron squad at [...]



Leave A Comment