By EARL COX
If there is any doubt in your mind about the classy University of Louisville athletic program that Tom Jurich runs, check this:
When David Letterman’s people called the university to arrange for injured Cardinal Kevin Ware to appear on the late night show and do the Top 10 list, UofL insisted on two stipulations:
There would be nothing off-color.
There would be nothing derogatory about the University of Kentucky.
That doesn’t surprise you, I know. But it gives me the opportunity to pass along some ideas I’ve had since the awful mess at Rutgers University. For the people in New Jersey to have confidence in anyone assigned to right the ship, it would take a person of absolute character and common sense.
And I have just the man for Rutgers: Mitch Barnhart, the squeaky-clean A.D at UK. He could do the job. No matter how much money it would take to lure Barnhart away from Lexington, he would be more than worth it to the state university of New Jersey.
But who would replace Barnhart at UK?
Simple. Jurich would be more than capable of running the sports operations at both UofL and UK!
If one governor can run our entire state of about four million people, one person of Jurich’s ability and character could lead two athletic departments. Sprawling businesses are run by one person at the top.
Now, all of you are still standing, quit laughing.
Do you remember who lured Jurich to Louisville?
A former UK Wildcat halfback for Bear Bryant, Harry Jones, and another Louisville businessman are the people who persuaded Jurich to come to UofL. Jones also served on the UofL board of trustees.
Harry took a lot of guff from his UK friends, but he recognized the importance of what UofL means to the welfare of Louisville. And he himself and his late twin Larry started and built an extremely successful plastics business.