Kentucky Sports Radio

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KSR’s take on recent non sports related happenings

The Funkhouser Situation: Episode 7

Chris Tomlin and Lee Cruse are back for another excellent edition of The Funkhouser Situation.  KSR’s pop culture podcast touches on a variety of topics from the week, including…


—  Are the new Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominees any good?

—  Take ’em or leave ’em: which Hollywood celebrities they can live with and without.

—  Is Taylor Swift fun to hang out with?

—  Netflix series recommendation: Mindhunter.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

Tom Petty and the NBA Outlook You’ve Been Looking For: Part II

Tom Petty and the NBA Outlook You’ve Been Looking For: Part II

The NBA season starts tonight so here is the final bit of prognosticating before tip off.  In case you missed last week’s Eastern Conference preview you can check that out here.  Remember, the team predictions are all in honor of Tom Petty and therefore each team’s song will be a Tom Petty song.

Dallas- “Into the Great Wide Open”

“His leather jacket had chains that would jingle
They both met movie stars, partied and mingled
Their A&R man said, “I don’t hear a single.”
The future was wide open”

The Dallas Mavericks have been riding on the Dirk Nowitzki train for a long time.  As Nowitzki prepares for his 20th season, the Mavs appear like they’re trying to gear up for one more playoff push.  The Mavs will have a veteran team with a potential star in rookie Dennis Smith.  Ultimately I think the West is just too tough and probably the Mavs will be staring into the post-Nowitzki void in the near future.  From there who knows what to expect for Dallas.


2017 National Toy Hall of Fame Nominees Ranked

2017 National Toy Hall of Fame Nominees Ranked

Every Year in September, The Strong National Museum of Play releases its 12 finalists for the National Toy Hall of Fame.  Since 1998, the The Strong’s National Toy Hall of Fame “recognizes toys that have inspired creative play and enjoyed popularity over a sustained period.”  Selections to the hall are made on the advice of “historians, educators, and other individuals who exemplify learning, creativity and discovery through their lives and careers.”  I think that last part should read, “adults who still plays with toys,” which covers most of us here at Funkhouser.

These “historians” have inducted 62 toys to the Hall of fame since 1998, including the Atari 2600, Crayola Crayons, Lincoln Logs, LEGO, Mr. Potato Head, Play-Doh, roller skates, and most recently in 2016, Dungeons & Dragons, Fisher Price Little People, and the Swing.  Also, three times in the history of The Hall, an item that wasn’t a “finalist” earned admittance into the Hall of Fame: Cardboard Box (2005), Blanket (2011), and Stick (2008).

Recently, The Strong put out the list of 12 finalists for induction into the Hall of Fame in 2017: Clue, Magic 8 Ball, Matchbox Cars, My Little Pony, Paper Airplane, Pez Despenser, Play Food, Risk, Sand, Transformers, Uno, and the Wiffleball.  The expert committee will help select just “two or three” of the 12 toys to enter the hall on the following criteria:

  • Icon-status: The toy is widely recognized, respected, and remembered
  • Longevity: The toy is more than a passing fad and has enjoyed popularity over multiple generations
  • Discovery: The toy fosters learning, creativity, or discovery through play
  • Innovation: The toy profoundly changed play or toy design. A toy may be inducted on the basis of this criterion without necessarily having met all of the first three.

While the newest inductees won’t be added to the hall until November 9th, we at Funkhouser thought we’d go ahead and make our vote for who we thought should get in.  Our “expert committee” included the entire Funkhouser staff along with Nick Roush, Shannon The Dude, Tyler Thompson, Maria Taustine and Ryan Lemond.  Votes were tabulated on a 3-2-1 points system to find our definitive inductees.

#10 (Tie) – Sand (0 Points)

Sand is a Finalist of the Strand Toy Hall of Fame for the first time, earning that status with items like Stick, and Blanket, which prove to be very non-traditional ‘toys’. The idea behind Sand’s nomination is that kids can play in it and unleash their creativity, based on the ability to sculpt and manipulate the substance into whatever they want. It’s always amazing to see people who are able to build incredible sand sculptures at the beach, only to have them washed away by the high tide. Sand doesn’t make our list, but I could see it earning a spot in The Strong’s Hall of Fame.

#10 (Tie) – Play Food (0 Points)

Play Food got no love from our voting committee, mainly because of the much stronger choices listed below. However, play food is an integral part of growing up as a child. Play food teaches a lot of skills to kids: manners, social skills, shopping, and that risotto is just simply not possible in a 30 minute time frame Sally, and that’s why we had to chop you. Toys like Play Food are important to the imagination of children and the world of make believe, which would be a great representation in the Toy Hall of Fame.

#10 (Tie) – My Little Pony (0 Points) – Four Time Finalist

My Little Pony last appeared in the Strong Toy Hall of Fame finalists list in 2014, which is the first year Funkhouser started weighing in. At that time, none of our esteemed panel voted for it either. Maybe it’s because our group has a more collective focus, but My Little Pony has been in the pop culture lexicon for over 35 years. Between the popularity of the toy in the 1980s (where it briefly outsold Barbie), and its resurgence in the 2010s, My Little Pony eventually deserves to make the Strong Toy Hall of Fame.

#9 – Pez Dispenser (2 Points) – Two Time Finalist

Is the Pez Dispenser actually a toy? In reality, probably not, but who are we to ague with the Strong Toy Hall of Fame. I get a Pez Dispenser in my stocking every year, this year being the WWE 3-Pack, with the Rock, John Cena and the Undertaker, but it appears I can only see two of them in the box. There are over 550 various character head Pez dispensers at this point. The Tweety Bird dispenser is famously featured in the Seinfeld episode where he ruins a performance by just simply setting the dispenser on Elaine’s leg. The candy is alright, but Pez will always be well known more for the dispensers.

#6 (Tie) – Magic 8 Ball (5 Points) – Seven Time Finalist

I imagine a lot of poor decisions have been made via Magic 8 Ball over the years.  The Magic 8 Ball is a plastic ball filled with liquid and a large die (more or less) with outcomes printed on each face.  Ask the Magic 8 Ball a question, shake it up, and your fate will float to the top, sort of, after rattle it a bit so that a side with a response actually comes to the surface.  This is the seventh time since 2003 that the Magic 8 Ball has been on the finalist list.  Will this be the year for the prognostication toy? All signs point to no…

#6 (Tie) – Risk (5 Points)

Risk makes the Strong Hall of Fame Finalists list for the first time in its illustrious history, and that’s probably because the voting committee just finished their first game. Risk joins the list of games that Just. Never. End. I’ve once played a Risk game where we kept it in a separate room, and gave a neutral party the key so that no one would mess with the board.  Risk, The Game Of Strategic Conquest is a war strategy game, in which the goal of the game is to eliminate all players and capture all 42 territories on the board. Attacking, dice rolling, and area control are key factors in the game which has been around for 60 years now. There are various versions of Risk, the most current (I believe) is Risk: Europe, which is available at Target, and is a remaking of Castle Risk from the 80s. If you can get your hands on one Risk Game, make it Risk Legacy, where you get to write on the board, rip up cards, and more, all to make your game different than any other Risk Legacy game in existence.

#6 (Tie) – Paper Airplanes (5 Points) – Three Time Finalist

Granted, none of the paper airplanes we ever made looked like the one pictured above, but Paper Airplanes played to our creativity.  Think about it, it took one sheet of paper, but you could try out millions of different variations.  The first paper airplane that you made, the one that flew straight into the ground, sparked your interest for trial and error.  What went wrong? How do I fix it?  You make a change, and it flies a little further. Make another change, and flew in a loop and ended up behind you.  Then you bought that book from the Scholastic Book Fair and you made an overly complicated airplane, but it flew 20 feet.  Either way, Paper Airplanes have been a toy that has and will surpass the test of time, making it a perfect entry into the Toy Hall of Fame. (In 2014, Funkhouser voted Paper Airplanes into its Toy Hall of Fame, but amongst this collection of toys, Paper Airplanes does not make the cut).

#5 – Matchbox Cars (7 Points)

Outside of LEGOs, Matchbox cars might be the #1 cause for parental swearing in the household based on the level of pain they cause when stepped on with bare feet.  This is the first time since 2003 that Matchbox cars have been a finalist in the Strong Toy Hall of Fame, which is quite surprising.  Matchbox has been around since 1953, introduced by a British company, and got its name based on the packaging that the cars were originally sold in.  Over time, you could find cars based on actual models, service vehicles, and today with replications of cars that existed in television and movies. Combine the cars with plastic track, or street mats, and children could have a blast reimagining car chases, races or everyday situations, and now you have a whole world of creativity for kids.

#4 – Transformers (8 Points)

Drew Franklin recently asked on the radio show, “How many Transformers are there?” Well, when Transformers hit North America in 1984, there were 28 (18 Auto-Bots/10 Decepticons). My response to him was “There’s More Than Meets The Eye”.  The concept behind Transformers are that the robots change from cars/vehicles or other objects into robots that fight off the Decepticons.   As many a toy property in the 80s, Transformers were greeted with a back-story which was supported by cartoons, movies, video games, cereals, you name it.  Transformers are still relevant today as there have been five blockbuster movies made of the series, with a sixth coming out in 2018, which is titled “Bumblebee”.  Transformers toys move up from our vote last year, but just don’t crack the top three for the Funkhouser Toy Hall of Fame.

#3 – Uno (11 Points) – Two Time Finalist

Uno hit the scene in 1971 as a game where players try to get every card out of their hand before the other players are able to do so. Play cards to the stack that either match the number or color to rid cards from your hand. The game also saw itself as a way to make children angry at one another, as a game that taught the “Take That” mechanic of board and card games. Also, the key component to the game was that when you were down to one card, you had to say UNO, and if someone said it before you could, you had to draw five cards. Sometimes you can’t get UNO out fast enough before someone jumps all over you.  Despite all the bickering this game causes, it is an easy game to learn and teach to kids, and a game they will want to play over and over again.  Congrats to UNO, for making it into the Funkhouser Toy Hall of Fame.

#2 – Wiffle Ball (14 Points – 4 First Place Votes) – Five Time Finalist

If someone asked me right now to have a Wiffle Ball game, I would drop everything I’m doing to play. I keep a velcro scoreboard in the trunk of my car, just in case a Wiffle Ball game breaks out (no joke). My senior year May Term at Transy probably suffered because of the Wiffle Ball league I ran in back circle. Needless to say, I love that yellow bat and plastic ball with half holes. Don’t get confused either by any imitation products. If I’m playing Wiffle Ball, I want to see exactly what’s in the picture above. No Junk Ball.  No Blitz Ball. There is a skill to throwing curves/slurves/risers/sinkers with the Wiffle Ball, and I hold those to a very high standard. There was always something as a kid, when you could just get a group of kids together in the front yard to play a full game, getting outs by pegging each other from 20 feet away. This is one of the greatest toys of all time, and rightfully earns a spot in Funkhouser’s Toy Hall of Fame

#1 – Clue (15 Points – 3 First Place Votes) – Seven Time Finalist

I’ll go ahead and say it, Clue is my favorite “classic” board game of all time. I’m a Monopoly apologist, but Clue just has a soft spot in my heart. In Clue, players are trying to deduce who murdered Mr. Boddy, based on three cards (person, location, weapon) that are secretly placed in an envelope in the middle of the board. Players must then traverse the mansion to make accusations on who they think did it. If someone is holding a card of something or someone they accused, that person can secretly show the accuser that card, and they’re one step closer to solving the mystery. Also, this is the seventh time Clue has been a finalist for the Toy Hall of Fame, tied for the most of any other toy on this list. Can we finally get justice for this game, and more specifically Mr. Boddy?  Well Clue’s about to go in The Hall… Whodunnit? Funkhouser’s Toy Hall of Fame, that’s who…

Which of these toys do you think should make the Strong Toy Hall of Fame?  Let us know on Twitter: @FunkhouserKSR

The Funkhouser Situation: Episode 6


Chris Tomlin and Lee Cruse have a lot to talk about in this week’s edition of The Funkhouser Situation.  From Harvey Weinstein to the new BladeRunner movie and Star Wars trailer, they cover it all.  Highlights:

—  Lee Cruse shares a story he’s never discussed publicly about the dark side of the entertainment industry.

—  Misdirection in the Star Wars trailer.

—  Ranking James Bond movies.

—  Coach Cal’s resemblance to an actor in Quick Draw.

—  Lee’s late night radio experiences.

—  An evaluation of Bruce Willis’ IMDB profile.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

The Dirty John Live Pod

The Dirty John Live Pod


Debra Newell Stewart and John Meehan are the centerpiece of my most recent podcast obsession, Dirty John. John is a diabolical crook who preys on lonely women.  Debra is normal.  She’s an outlier on the spectrum of episodic podcast personalities.  The two met on a dating site for singles over fifty called “Our Time.”  From there, the couple fell madly in love, even at the request from Debra’s family that she end the relationship.  Debra’s family felt like there was something not right about John.  Their story is a reverse Romeo and Juliet.  The story has everything–a secret Vegas marriage, puppies, scrub analysis and the most satisfying ending to a podcast series that I have ever heard.

There’s only one downside.

Listening to a podcast can be a lonely business.  It’s you, the earbuds and whatever ad the show is shilling that day.  There is already lots of chatter about Dirty John and all of his lies but, I like instant gratification.  Below, is a little present for when you make it to episode six.  A play by play reaction to all of the little moments that makes Dirty John end with finality.    Trust me, when you get to episode six, you’ll want someone to ðŸ˜² with!

Spoilers Below!


Tom Petty and the NBA Outlook You’ve Been Looking For

Tom Petty and the NBA Outlook You’ve Been Looking For

It’s October which means we are now only days away from the start of a new NBA season.  It also means that it’s time once again for annual musical NBA prognostications.  The 2017 edition of the musical outlook will be dominated by one person.  The recent passing of Tom Petty was not only a sad day for the music world, but the sports world as well.  The majority of people knew Tom Petty through his music, and his legacy is cemented in the pantheon of greats in the history of music.  Petty was also an active member of the sports community as well.  His halftime performance at Super Bowl XLII became one of legend as “I Won’t Back Down” became a rallying cry for the underdog Giants as they went on to beat the undefeated Patriots.  Petty was also a diehard Lakers fan, and he was a staple at courtside for Lakers games.  Tom Petty was able to tap into the spirit of all people because ultimately he represented everyone in his music.  We could all relate to at least one of his songs, but usually more than one.  In honor of Tom Petty, this NBA outlook will use only songs that are related to his various acts.

After a wild offseason we can only hope the regular season can deliver.  If you have been following along since last June we’ve seen blockbuster trades involving superstars and top teams, there’s an arms race in the Western Conference, crazy Twitter conspiracies, and the continuing saga of LaVar Ball.  Now that the season is upon us and the rosters are set it’s time to peer into the musical crystal ball to see what exactly is in store for the 2017-18 NBA season.  This week we will look at the Eastern Conference, the definite B-side to this year’s NBA album.  Next week we will look at the Western Conference.


Hell in A Cell 2017 Preview – You’re Never Too Old To Watch Wrestling Podcast

Hell in A Cell 2017 Preview – You’re Never Too Old To Watch Wrestling Podcast

Hell in a Cell 2017 takes place tonight in Detroit, Michigan with a pretty good lineup of matches.  Shane vs. Kevin Owens, as well as New Day vs The Usos sit as two of the most look forward to matches of the year, both taking place inside Hell in a Cell. Not to mention AJ Styles in a US Title match, Ziggler v. Roode, Nakamura, and Charlotte v. Natalya all add to the solid show.

To get you in the mindset for WWE Hell in a Cell 2017, the guys from the You’re Never Too Old To Watch Wrestling Podcast have put together their latest episode, which is a deep dive into the full Pay-Per-View card.  Kentucky boys, Anthony Combs and Paul Phillips, talk weekly about all of the happenings in the wrestling ring, in a very entertaining show.  They have been very kind to bring me back on the show to discuss HiaC predictions, Bradley Cooper as Vince McMahon, Lance Russell, and more. So, while you’re still celebrating the Football win last night, take a listen to this week’s episode of “You’re Never Too Old To Watch Wrestling”

Click here to listen to “You’re Never Too Old To Watch Wrestling” on iTunes


The Funkhouser Situation: Episode 5

Chris Tomlin and Lee Cruse return for another hilarious edition of KSR’s pop culture podcast, The Funkhouser Situation.  Superhero movies are today’s main topic, they discuss this week’s top box office hits, and…

—  What kind of actor can make a bad move palatable?

—  The new Tom Cruise movie has connections to Louisville, and Kentucky ties to “The Kingsman.”

—  Lee Cruse: “He wasn’t as tight as he was at 30.”

—  What makes a superhero movie great.

—  The superheroes they looked up to when they were kids in the early 20th century.

—  A heated debate over Captain America.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

The Best Dress Television Has Ever Seen

The Mindy Project is about a single OB-Gyn living in New York City.   Dr. Lahiri, played by Mindy Kaling, is the best dressed character on TV.  No one comes close. The show’s costume designer, Salvador Perez, consistently dresses Mindy in bright pops of color, expensive Chanel coat thingys and the boldest floral prints.  It’s everything.  The looks aren’t practical.  During delivery, Dr. Lahiri is likely to soil her gold Gucci flats.  But that’s not the point.  Her wardrobe is the most important character on The Mindy Project and I’m so here for it.  


The Mindy Project Style chronicles each of the outfits worn throughout all six seasons.   Recently, the website revealed one of the dresses that will be worn on the series finale.  Y’all, it’s perfect. I have no rational reason to wear this dress.  But, then again, what rational reason does Dr. Lahiri have for wearing a $1,295 Lela Rose Floral Jacquard Bell-Sleeve Sheath Dress to work?

The idea of wearing such a spectacular dress is just as fantastical as the dragons on Game of Thrones.  If I let my mind wander long enough, I can dream up a few occasions that I could rationalize wearing this perfect dress.

But first, let’s appreciate what Diane Von Furstenberg has created.  

  1. Although still expensive, the price doesn’t have a comma in it.
  2. Sparkles!
  3. UK Blue and White
  4. Looks like a picnic table cloth caught in a spring rain
  5. Cinched waist for a slimming fit
  6. Gingham is so in right now.
  7. It’s so shiny

I could write more reasons but they are all sparkle adjacent.

The good doctor has proved that although you need a healthy clothing budget, you don’t need a good reason to wear a great dress.  That being stated as fact, all we need is a few somewhat plausible reasons to wear DVF’s gingham masterpiece.  Here’s a few I’ve been kicking around:

💙 When Reese Witherspoon and I finally become friends and she invites me to her Nashville estate

💙 To the grocery store to match my click list bags from the Kroger

💙 To every Spring Keeneland Saturday

💙 Any and every wedding I will ever attend

💙 Anytime I will be near a group of 30 or more people

💙 As I storm the field when UK finally beats Florida

💙 Every 4th of July with a sassy red bandana in my hair

💙 Halloween when I dress up as Dr. Mindy Lahiri from the season finale of The Mindy Project

💙 Anytime I could potentially be near Joanna Gaines for a cool conversation starter

💙 To blend in at any picnic

💙 To clash with any plaids

💙 When I go to get a matching custom made American Girl doll

💙 To wear at home while scrolling through Pinterest

💙 Definitely to a New England clam bake

It’s an odd thing to fantasize about a dress that has yet to appear on a TV show.  Knowing The Mindy Project’s track record, I can guarantee that Mindy will have less than my previous reasons to wear the dress.  She’ll probably be eating something I never knew I’d want (like chicken pie a la mode) and asking her signature question, “Exsqueeze Me?”  None of it makes sense, but then again neither do dragons, incest and chilled zombies, but people seem to love that too.  

The Funkhouser Situation: Episode 4

Chris Tomlin and Lee Cruse return for another exciting edition of KSR’s best kept secret, The Funkhouser Situation.  With the fall TV season starting, there’s a ton to discuss, like…

—  This week’s SNL premiere and who has the early hosting gigs.

—  The SNL show that led to Chris and Lee’s first bonding moment.

—  What makes a movie quote iconic?

—  Movies that come on TV you can’t turn off.

You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play.  Streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.  You can also get it directly to your phone by subscribing to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app.

The “Princess Bride” Just Turned 30…Inconceivable!

The “Princess Bride” Just Turned 30…Inconceivable!

Yesterday was the 30th anniversary of a glorious day.  On September 25, 1987 The Princess Bride was given to the world, and the world has been a much better place for it.  I could write a lot about The Princess Bride.  It’s one of my triumvirate of favorite movies (along with Jaws and Jurassic Park) and a movie I regularly watch multiple times a year.  I never get tired of it.  The cast is perfect, the story never gets old, and it is one of the most quoteable movies of all time.  Everybody has their favorites: “Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya…”, “as you wish”, mawwiage”, and so many more.

The enduring charm of The Princess Bride is that it is basically the perfect movie.  I suppose that last sentence was not entirely accurate since it only has a 97% on Rotten Tomatoes, but I will disregard that other three percent.  There is absolutely something for everyone in this movie.  Practically every genre is covered: fantasy, adventure, action, romantic comedy, drama, and a little bit of horror if you count the shrieking eels and Count Rugen.  The movie is also appropriate for any age group.  I have been watching The Princess Bride for as long as I can remember, and it just never gets old.  I even named my dog (pictured below) Buttercup after the main character.  Needless to say, I love this movie and to honor its 30th anniversary I made a list of the top five quotes that are most often overlooked as great quotes:

“Anybody want a peanut?”-Fezzik

“I’ll explain it and I’ll use small words so that you’ll be sure to understand, you warthog faced buffoon…”- Westley

“Have fun stormin’ the castle.”  Miracle Max

“You seem a decent fellow, I hate to kill you.”- Inigo Montoya

“I do not envy you the headache you will have when you awake.  But for now, rest well and dream of large women.”- Westley

Oh what the heck, a Princess Bride post wouldn’t be complete without this too:

What are some of your favorite Princess Bride quotes?