So Gene Keady (and Rollie Massimino) have been elected to the College Basketball Hall of Fame, and the single most ringing endorsement for both is this: A lot of us were stunned they weren't already there.
This is especially true of Keady, who, after all, only won 550 games, six Big Ten titles and was 21-20 lifetime against his great nemesis Bob Knight. If his acceptance speech is anywhere near as entertaining as his postgame bouts with the media, he'll bring down the house.
The thing about Keady, see, is his bark was always worse than his bite. So he'd go off during games or in the postgame when someone asked something that set him off, but five minutes later it would be forgotten. The man never held a grudge that I'm aware of.
And his postgames were absolutely the most entertaining bits of performance art anywhere. Signature lines -- "Why wouldn't you want to play hard?" "Typical media (bleep)" -- became stock lines for the media lucky enough to cover the Boilers. And then there was that time in Lexington ...
Quick story: Purdue's in Lexington for the NCAA regional -- this was during the Glenn "Big Dog" Robinson era -- and a bunch of us sportswriters decided to go out to dinner. Initially, we took a couple of cars, but by the time we were ready to leave, one guy had already lit out.
So, here we were, six or seven guys on the Boiler beat, all trying to cram into one very small car. It was comical. It was ridiculous. It was, um, crowded.
And suddenly, from somewhere in the backseat, came this voice. It was JG writer Mark Schutte, whom everyone pretty much agreed did the best Keady impression on the beat.
"Typical media (bleep)," Schutte/Keady drawled.
Broke us right up.