Denny Crum, Joe Hall want to continue radio show

A decade ago, the Joe B and Denny Show on WKRD Radio was a big hit with local sports fans, providing an opportunity for them to hear debate on issues. That, of course, was before ESPN-680 and a couple of other radio stations wised up to the ratings value.

Now University of Louisville fans can catch up on their favorite athletic program on different stations throughout the day. UK fans as well.

Denny Crum and Joe Hall
Denny Crum and Joe Hall

Twitter was abuzz Thursday evening with reports that the Joe B and Denny Show was coming to an end. Those reports may have been premature.

Joe Hall, the former University of Kentucky basketball coach, and Denny Crum, his counterpart at UofL, have been doing the show for 10 years. Hall broadcasting from WVLK in Lexington, and Crume behind the microphone at WKRD in Louisville. While their primary focus is on the state’s two leading programs, they also discussed a lot of other issues, and spend a lot of time talking about hunting and fishing. On Friday, they were discussing the deer and bear populations in Kentucky.

WKRD employees received an email from station management Thursday that the show would end next week because WVLK is changing formats and was terminating its arrangement with the coaches.

Kelly Carls, the controversial program manager for Clear Channel stations in Louisville, told the Courier-Journal’s Adam Himmelsbach that he wanted to continue the relationship. “We’ve got a 10-year relationship with the coaches now and loved every minute of it,” Carls said. “So it’s basically up to them how long they want to do the show.”

The coaches have said they want to continue the show, which is also broadcast on other stations in the state, including WKU Public Radio in Bowling Green. Lexington has two other AM stations and nine FM stations so there would appear to be some viable options in parts of the state that worship anything UK blue.

Hopefully the show will continue. Their folksy, down home approach is  at least an alternative to some of the biased and argumentative approaches of other shows.


Bobby Knight Just Fades Away

Apparently Bobby Knight was just tired, couldn’t stand to coach another game at Texas Tech. Just a couple of months after signing a three-year contract extension. No angry outbursts, no getting in trouble for pushing or shoving someone. Not even a departing speech, at least not publicly. He just quit.

Few coaches have ignited the level of controversy that Knight generknithoodated while compiling a record 902 victories over 40 seasons. The pity is that he will be remembered as much his tirades as he was for his coaching abilities.

Those who respect Bobby Knight point to his teams’ exceptionally high graduation rates, his flawless record of NCAA compliance, three NCAA basketball championships, and an Olympic gold medal. Then there are the instances where he performed genuine acts of kindness or was extremely generous to fans of his basketball team.

Fellow coaches Denny Crum, Rick Pitino and Joe Hall have alluded to Bobby Knight’s upstanding character. Rick Barnes of the University of Texas even counted him among the great teachers. “He has affected countless numbers of people with his teachings and ideas, people he could never realize that he has touched,” said Barnes. “And that will continue in time as we pass down those teachings to future generations.”

One has to assume that Barnes was referring to basketball teachings. He fell far short in other areas of life. If you are a fellow coach, a basketball player or a fan of Indiana basketball, Bobby Knight is a great guy, a tower of strength, a beacon of humanity. Good thing he was winning all those games, huh?

Knight also set a horrible example of how not to treat people. He apparently believed his won-lost record entitled him to humiliate and belittle basketball referees, conference officials, members of the media, his own players at times. His abilities and decisions were beyond reproach, not to be questioned.

If you tuned in Texas Tech basketball, you didn’t do it to see a great master at work. A Bobby Knight outburst might occur at any second and you didn’t want to miss it. X’s and O’s will only take you so far. His public temperament betrayed him, stripping away any chance for Knight to be remembered as a good teacher or great coach for many.