Wednesday morning, universities around the nation set out to announce the top additions to their football programs. National Signing Day is a time-honored tradition, and many schools opt to spice up the proceedings. Baylor University did just that, but the fans were a little upset about the entire situation.
Wednesday, the Baylor Twitter account sent out a series of announcement videos that prominently featured puppets. The new additions to the team were providing the narration while describing their journey to the Bears, but the actual figures in the video were puppets.
There was no denying that this style of announcement video did provide a unique take on National Signing Day, but there were many football fans that couldn't believe this was actually happening. Some viewed the puppet videos as a fever dream while others simply tried to figure out what went into creating these videos.
Baylor University certainly had goals of turning heads with their player announcements, and they did just that. The reactions on Twitter were far more negative in tone as the majority criticized the decision. Although there was one fan of the team that wanted to see more of the puppet videos.
Photo Credit: John Bunch/Icon Sportswire via Getty
Following the videos surfacing that featured puppets, there were many football fans that wanted to know how this came to be. Was the marketing department involved, or did an intern create the idea? However, there were some other fans that were even sure if they were seeing something real.
Stumbling upon puppets dressed up like football players was one thing, but seeing multiple puppets wearing the same uniform was very jarring for some on social media. They wanted to know if this was actually happening.
Somebody is getting fired from the marketing department today 😂 This is so weird!— Carlos Danger (@MasonE2010) December 18, 2019
Those that watched the announcement videos for Baylor were shocked to see puppets roaming across the screen. National Signing Day is generally viewed as a serious affair, but the puppet usage made it more joking in nature. So was this a poor reflection on the university?
Following the unveiling of the puppets, there were many on social media that called for some changes at Baylor. They wanted the marketing department, or whoever created the puppets, to be sent packing.
Baylor really bringing in some of the best Muppet talent in the country today. Look for these guys to make an immediate impact next season #NSD20— davis savoy (@dsavoy23) December 18, 2019
Yes, Baylor University used puppets to announce their signing day class, but what does this mean for future success? The primary discussion during National Signing Day revolves around which players can immediately step into the rotation and contribute in a meaningful way. This is critical for schools such as Ohio State and Alabama that lose a significant amount of talent to the NFL Draft each year.
At this point, there are doubts about the puppets being able to contribute when needed, but one fan made an attempt at projecting future success. In his eyes, these signings would be critical for Baylor in the coming years.
So do they get to keep the puppets, or what?!?— Dank (@kruzie96) December 18, 2019
The decision to prominently feature puppets during National Signing Day was viewed as odd by many. Others simply said that this was the type of decision that fueled their nightmares. A third sect, however, wanted to know what happened to the puppets after the end of the video shoot.
As many pointed out, creating puppets that resemble the incoming players is not the most budget-friendly pursuit. This likely cost the university a fair amount of money, so what will they do with the puppets in the future?
Imagine if they just paid them instead of creating custom muppets and professional videos— KC & the Sunshine Band (@KCandtheSunshi) December 18, 2019
There was no denying that the puppets were very divisive during National Signing Day, and many wanted to figure out why they even existed. Others, however, had very different questions. They wanted to know why Baylor was spending so much money in this manner.
In recent years, there has been a debate about whether or not college athletes should be paid for their likeness. Many are opposed to this idea, but others believe that the money used on puppets and other assorted merchandise could be used to help out the student-athletes.
It’s 2019 and you‘re rolling with the muppets in hype videos— Mountain Doocy (@FtWorthOriginal) December 18, 2019
Adding muppets to the conversation was entertaining for many fans of Baylor football, but there were many others that were just confused. They wanted to know why and how this National Signing Day campaign came into existence. Specifically, why are puppets a thing in 2019?
As some pointed out on social media, puppets standing in for real humans were prominent during the early 2000s with Crank Yankers. This Jimmy Kimmel-created show had puppets resembling celebrities, and they would conduct prank calls to elicit laughs.
Other schools when they realize they shoulda used puppets for recruit videos pic.twitter.com/BvoeOYa0Yy— Baylor dude (@BradNewsome9) December 18, 2019
The vast majority of football fans that saw the puppet videos were very unhappy. They thought this was a little odd and that it might actually ruin the relationship with the players that had joined the program. However, there was one fan on Twitter that was all about this decision.
As the username reveals, this particular fan has strong ties to the Baylor Bears. He proved this with multiple tweets about how he wanted a puppet and how other programs were mad that they missed out on this particular announcement style.