Under Armour All-America players understand dangers, benefits of social media

Under Armour All-America players understand dangers, benefits of social media

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Under Armour All-America players understand dangers, benefits of social media

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Alex Scherff plays it safe on his social media accounts. (Photo: Caylor Arnold, USA TODAY Sports)

Alex Scherff plays it safe on his social media accounts. (Photo: Caylor Arnold, USA TODAY Sports)

CHICAGO—Teenagers using social media is not news. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat — most high schoolers are just as comfortable conversing on their phones as they are in person. This doesn’t mean there aren’t drawbacks to using social media platforms, and the young men playing in Saturday’s Under Armour All-America game know to be wise with what they say online.

“You can’t post anything bad or it messes you up. It’s your image. If you post bad stuff, it’s only messing you up. No one else,” said Jack Conlon of Clements High in Sugarland, Texas.

“It’s not like I want to post anything bad,” Alex Scherff of Prestonwood Christian in Colleyville, Texas. “You have to think about what you’re saying.”

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They know that scouts and coaches are watching, and saying the wrong thing could end up hurting their draft stock or ability to earn a scholarship at their chosen college. But it’s not just their future that is making them post cautiously.

“I don’t want to have a bad rep within the community,” said Helena, Ala.’s Sam Praytor. “I want to be cool with everybody, be friends with everybody.”

But they also see the upside of being online. Conlon particularly likes Twitter.

“There’s more people, and it’s really social. Lots of interaction, a lot of funny stuff. You meet new people as well,” he said.

Hagen Danner, who plays for Huntington Beach High School in California, uses Twitter mostly as a news source.

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“I use it to get updated with what’s going on, but I don’t post too much. I usually just stay away, or don’t post anything. Why does anyone need to see what I’m doing?” he said with a laugh.

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