Graveyard of football coaches buries another one
Whereas Miami of Ohio is known as the "cradle of coaches," a good case can be made that the University of Kentucky has become the "graveyard of coaches."As my Alabama buddy loves to point out, we once had two of the greatest coaching names in their respective sports in American sports history, and we ran "Bear" Bryant off.
We followed that up by canning one of the few over-.500 coaches in UK football history, Blanton Collier — who would then take the Cleveland Browns to four NFL championship games, winning once — and to all appearances did it here cleanly. The other clean coach who came close to .500 was Jerry Claiborne, like Joker Phillips a true blue-blooded alumnus and roundly criticized while here for not winning more.
We've been so desperate and anxious for winning that we've bought into a coaching carousel that guarantees continued losing. Football is entirely unlike basketball: you can't just bring in two or three stud players and get into the NCAA Tournament.
It takes lots of quality players and quality depth. Miss a couple of years, misjudge or lose players, and you're staring at losing again in the Southeastern Conference.
Even established SEC programs have years in which they haven't recruited well and ended up near the bottom.
In short, there's no easy fix, but the path to ensuring we don't achieve success is to continue to make changes when we already had a highly competent coaching staff with a head coach who "bleeds blue" like we do.
Forest L. Ramsey II
Comics worth keeping
A recent letter to the editor said the comic strip F Minus should be canceled. I found this odd considering it is one of the few strips that is consistently funny. In fact, I find it to be the best single panel strip since The Far Side.
I'll make this easy for you: Keep F Minus, Zits, Bizarro, Blondie, Pickles and the brilliant Pearls Before Swine (easily the best strip in the paper). Trash Red and Rover, Dennis the Menace, Beetle Bailey, all of the soap opera ones (who actually reads those?) and the atrocious Family Circus, which has never been funny — not once — and didn't the cartoonist die a year ago? His horrible creation haunts us from his grave.
Get on with trial
What a shame to see U.S.-appointed attorneys representing one individual who murdered 13 Army personnel at Fort Hood, Texas. It's against his religion to have his beard shaved, but his religion condones murder? This individual should be tried whether he be shaved, unshaven, naked, clothed or otherwise, for the murders he committed.
Face teen suicide
Youth suicide needs to be brought out from under the rug where many have swept it, hoping it will go away.
My daughter's high school graduating class lost one of its own this way, during the senior year. You'd better believe that this affected each of them in different ways at a vulnerable time in their lives.
This young person's very existence — the struggle, the death, the absence — was ignored during the commencement ceremony.
I worked hard on a letter to my local paper to express my feelings about the oversight, which caused the missing graduate's family more suffering.
The reason my letter was not published — and this was gently explained to me in a phone call — was that they did not glorify this sort of thing.
Teen suicide is the elephant in the room. Our kids may be young but young does not equal stupid.
The true victims of suicide at any age are the survivors.
Joanne Orr Johnson
I am a taxpaying citizen who works, obeys the laws, pays my bills and tries to help my neighbors as much as possible.
Our neighborhood needs more protection and attention to stop all the crime. We need speed bumps to protect us from the race-car drivers who will surely kill one of us before we can get anyone to pay attention to this problem. Half of Lindy Lane has them but not the other half. Why?
Our neighborhood has had at least 20 break-ins in the last few months, my home being one of them. There have been no arrests for any of these crimes. Why?
I was told the police department was so understaffed that these cases were not properly handled. What are we supposed to do to get the protection we so rightly deserve?
We all live in fear of which one of us will be next. We deserve to be safe in our own homes. We want our peaceful neighborhood back.
I am very concerned about the state of affairs at the national level.
Four years ago, a man was elected to lead this country. He promised us transparency but sealed all records pertaining to information about himself.
Why would any man or woman do that? What could be in those records that he is hiding from us? Is this transparency?
In my opinion, the president's secrecy and his handling of the latest major devastating military situation leads me to believe he does not measure up to be the leader of America.
Richard C. Dolan
Obamacare a keeper
If the politicians think they convinced me of anything by their television ads, they are mistaken.
The attack ads have no truth in them and only appeal to fear and loathing of the opponents. They insult my intelligence with half-truths and misrepresentation of the truth.
The more I read about the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, the more I like it.
The provisions of the act help make parity between mental illness and physical illness a reality. Plus, it extends physical care to those who suffer from various mental disorders.
It helps people who cannot get health care get the care they need even if they have pre-existing conditions and other chronic issues. It will not cost Medicare anything but will save money, contrary to a scare ad I saw on television.
Besides, I believe it to be hypocritical for people in Congress to vote it out of existence since they have the best health insurance available. I wish I had their coverage. Why don't they vote their own health insurance out of existence and save taxpayers all kinds of money?
I enjoyed watching Joker Phillips as a player and was unhappy that his efforts as a coach were not successful.
However, I beg University of Kentucky Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart not to give an ounce of consideration toward replacing him with Bobby Petrino, a former University of Louisville coach.
This is not a UK vs. UL issue. This is an issue of replacing a fine young man with a man who has serious personal character flaws, such as an extramarital affair with a staffer in Arkansas.
UK does not need to win at that cost.