Someone at the C-J sent out a tweet Friday morning with a photo of a prostitute sticking $50 bills in a bra with the question, “Should Tom Jurich get a Hometown Hero banner?”
The tweet is accompanied by a post by Jeffrey Lee Puckett on the online site suggesting a banner for Jurich could somehow appease UofL fans if the school is forced to relinquish the NCAA banner? Yes, that Jeffrey Lee Puckett, the music critic and part-time sports fan, the one who boasted he was a Kentucky fan before he quit being a UofL fan.
Is the corporate mindset at the Gannet outlet really that much out of touch with the community? Did the placement of the original photo, which was removed after two hours, really reflect the staff’s contempt for UofL? For Tom Jurich?
Or was it just someone trying to be cute, stooping to a new low? Is the CJ’s goal simply to attract attention, no matter how trite or tasteless, regardless of who is negatively impacted?
Sadly, one must conclude the answer has to be yes for all of the above questions. The Courier-Journal is not your grandfather’s newspaper, the one that won all those Pulitzer Prizes under the Binghams.
Some of the negative coverage could be expected given the fallout from the alleged activities of former player Andre McGee and the results of the forensic audit. However, the C-J news side has gone overboard the last five years, prompting many to conclude the newspaper has been on a vendetta.
Starting early on with tying former UofL President Jim Ramsey’s administration to some thefts by a couple of employees to hyping the efforts of Steve Beshear trustee appointees to derailing Ramsey later on. The negative coverage has been relentless, so blatantly anti-UofL in so many instances.
The latest tweet hardly comes as a surprise, confirming what many UofL supporters have known all along.
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Maybe irrelevant, most likely coincidental, but certainly interesting that Wes Jackson, president of the C-J during this period, is a former University of Kentucky football player. Fortunately, he has moved on to USA Today’s automotive sales business, a far cry from journalism. Unfortunately, he will still be in the same building, consorting with his same co-workers.
The C-J web site makes it impossible to determine whether there are any graduates from the UK School of Journalism on the staff. Andrew Wolfson, who usually covers UofL, attended Colorado College. Columnist Joseph Gerth and reporter Philip Bailey are Louisville grads.
As previously noted here, the Courier-Journal prides itself on providing almost 50-50 coverage when it comes to UofL vs. UK athletics. However, the C-J provides very little coverage of other UK activities, relying primarily on wire service coverage. The result is a vacuum of coverage on other UK issues.
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To his credit, UofL beat writer Jeff Greer tweeting Friday morning that he had expressed his displeasure with the Jurich tweet to his superiors.