Emails Detail Extensive Maryland PR and Media Campaign to Change Impressions About Big Ten Move

By D.J. Byrnes on November 7, 2013 at 10:01 am
The (Trolling) Terps

Remember when the fact Maryland joining the B1G was met with a resounding "meh"? It appears that feeling was mutual. From The Baltimore Sun:

COLLEGE PARK — The University of Maryland anticipated most fans would initially react "emotionally and negatively" to last year's decision to join the Big Ten Conference. So the school sought to influence the debate with a plan to lobby media pundits and plant positive comments into fan message boards.

Scores of documents and emails, obtained by The Baltimore Sun in response to a Public Information Act request, detail a public relations strategy that was as secret as the Big Ten negotiations themselves.

... "So far, this is unfolding just as we expected," Brian Ullmann, the university's assistant vice president for marketing and communications, wrote in an email to deputy athletic director Nathan Pine on Nov. 18, one day after negotiations on the impending move were disclosed in the media. "We knew that in the absence of our messaging during this initial stage, most fans would react emotionally and negatively. That has occurred and clearly the message boards and comments sections skew heavily negative. Several of us placed comments on boards and media sites last night to help balance it out."

Yes, higher-ups at Maryland apparently read message boards. Them posting positive comments is also true:

So Maryland didn't want the B1G, and the B1G didn't want Maryland. Take a bow, everyone. 

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