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Ebenezer Scrooge and A Christmas Carol‘s Wednesday News and Views

You all know the story of Ebenezer Scrooge, the mean-spirited, miserly old man who despises Christmas and all things which give people happiness.  Scrooge is the primary character in Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, a novella released on this date in 1843.  It’s a tale of the hardships faced by London’s poor, and penny-pinching, grumpy ol’ Ebenezer Scrooge, who eventually opens his heart after being confronted by three Christmas spirits: Ghost of Christmas Past, Ghost of Christmas Present, and Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come.  The story has been credited with restoring the holiday spirit in Britain and America, and it was so so famous, the word “scrooge” has come to define a miserly person, even in non-English speaking countries.  A Christmas Carol remains popular today and has never been out of print; it has been adapted to film, stage, opera, and other media numerous times.

Dickens, the creator of the cold-hearted Christmas villain, described Ebenezer Scrooge best in this passage from A Christmas Carol: “The cold within him froze his old features, nipped his pointed nose, made his eyes red, his thin lips blue, and he spoke out shrewdly in his grating voice.”  The English author added, “A squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner!”

He’s like the Jerry Tipton of holiday cheer, basically.

Today, Scrooge and A Christmas Carol turn 169 years old.  Take a second to appreciate it, whenever you aren’t watching Christmas Vacation, of course.

“Bah humbug!” 


  It’s another long week for fans of Kentucky basketball, but news continues to roll out from around the football program.  Tuesday’s biggest story came from right here inside the Kentucky Sports Radio walls, when UK athletic director Mitch Barnhart joined Matt Jones in studio for an exclusive radio interview.  Barnhart was very candid in discussing the ins and outs of the Mark Stoops hire and what he expects for the future of Kentucky football.  Here are five things that stood out to me from the interview:

1.) The decision for change was made after the loss to Vanderbilt.

Mitch called himself an eternal optimist and said he wanted things to work out with Joker Phillips at the helm, but the disintegration of the fan support was discouraging and hard to manage.  He called the Vanderbilt game one that was very difficult to watch and he knew it would be very difficult to overcome.  “It became apparent (after the 40-0 home loss to Vanderbilt) that we were not going to get to a spot where we wanted to get to emotionally,” he said.  “We had to move on.”

2.) Bobby Petrino was never an option.

The pressure was certainly on Mitch Barnhart to consider hiring Bobby Petrino, but he said it was not a path he was ready to go down.  Barnhart called Petrino a heck of a football coach and wished him well at Western, but didn’t feel like the University of Kentucky was the place to give Petrino a second chance.  “It was never something that was in the conversation, contrary to all the reports out there,” he said.

3.) Defensive improvement was a primary focus of the hiring process.

Improving the defense is a priority for Kentucky to climb in the SEC. Barnhart acknowledged that UK was giving up 30 points per game and showing no signs of improving.  He knows the Wildcats will never be in the championship conversation, or make a respectable bowl game, with a defensive giving up that many points in the Southeastern Conference.  “You have no shot if you can’t stop somebody,” he said. “You will not continually outscore people in this league. At the end of the day, you have to play some defense.”

4.) He wanted someone who genuinely wanted the UK job.

Barnhart said, “There was no doubt in my mind, from the get-go, this was a job Mark had focused on and he wanted to be a part of the University of Kentucky. It wasn’t ‘Hey, I’m going to go talk to six schools and you’re one of them’ — it was ‘You’re the school I’m focused on’ and that was important to us.”

He didn’t want someone who was going to play games with Kentucky.  He felt some people were playing the field and those names were removed from consideration.  Only those with genuine interest in UK made the final list of candidates.

5.) Barnhart did it his way.

No leaks.  Only trust a handful of people.  Ignore the critics.  Ignore the haters.

“I don’t worry about what critics say about me.”

You can listen to the entire interview here.

  The football fun didn’t stop in the morning with Mitch Barnhart; new offensive coordinator Neal Brown was formally introduced to the Lexington media in a press conference Tuesday afternoon.  Brown spoke of his excitement to join Stoops’ staff in Lexington and the personal stake he has in improving the football program.  He said, “My whole family is UK fans. They grew up Kentucky fans. They’ve had a lot of season tickets. They’re UK fans. Whether I’m here or not, they’re UK fans.”  Brown, of course, is a Danville native and former wide receiver at Kentucky.

  Brown also addressed Kentucky’s quarterback situation and the three-way competition for the starting spot under center.  He expects a tough competition that’ll last through the spring and possibly even into training camp in the fall.

“It’s a good problem. It’s really not a (problem). It’s a good situation,” he said. “We’ve got three guys that can play quarterback in the Southeastern Conference. How we’re going to handle that is, it’s going to be an open competition.”

Whoever wins the job, whether it be Max Smith, Patrick Towles or Jalen Whitlow, can expect a fun and promising career in Brown’s Air Raid 2.0 offense.

  We also learned of two new UK football staff members on Tuesday: Jimmy Brumbaugh and Frank Buffano.  Brumbaugh, a former All-SEC defensive tackle at Auburn, will coach Kentucky’s defensive line.  Buffano will take over as director of football operations after three seasons as linebackers coach at Youngstown State.

Two fun facts:

— Buffano is an old friend of Stoops and a Cardinal Mooney graduate.

Brumbaugh played for the Birmingham Bolts in the XFL.

  Ever wondered where Billy Gillispie’s former UK recruits are these days?  KSR has looked into it a couple times since Clyde left Lexington, and’s Jeff Goodman — the man who doesn’t want your free drinks at the Hooters in Augusta — did it again on Tuesday.  Apparently, the Konner Tucker Band missed a potential game-winning 3-pointer against UNLV on Monday night with Billy Gillispie watching on from the stands.  Click here to see what everyone else is up to.

  Kentucky basketball’s first semester grades are final and eight Wildcats posted a B average or better in the fall.  The team’s overall GPA is nearly a 3.1 for the semester.

This tweet is going on the Craft Center’s Gatorade refrigerator!

  Keep voting for Kentucky to be featured on the cover of NCAA Football ’14.  It will be one of the most ridiculous accomplishments from Big Blue Nation’s online presence, if we can pull it off.


That’ll do it for now.  Check back with us tomorrow when we find out who has been naughty and nice this holiday season.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

47 Comments for Ebenezer Scrooge and A Christmas Carol‘s Wednesday News and Views

  1. UK Freshmen
    11:12 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    Our man Mitch. A man of clear vision. NOT. (Does he have naked photos of the Board? With goats?)

  2. ATLCat15
    11:13 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    You mean 1843?

  3. Chris
    11:19 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    You’re off a hundred years

  4. KSRGraduateSchool
    11:25 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    1843 Drew. You see, Scrooge was in victorian england not the battle of the bulge in WII. Stick to pop culture and basetball.

  5. Isaac in Long Beach
    11:27 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    1. Keep your loser opinions to yourself. I’m all for hearing out opinions that differ from my own (hell, I was a big Barnhart detractor myself), but if you listened to the interview, or even read the highlights from it, it’s apparent that he did what was best for the program and the university.

  6. Billy Clyde Sucks
    11:32 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    That Billy Clyde article is highly inaccurate.. Miller was coming to UK regardless of who the coach was, Meeks was a Tubby recruit and played a season with tubby, and Patterson was committed to Tubby but chose to still come after the coaching change.. Tubby did all the work on him, he just happened to still say “yes” to BCG.. the dude had 5 NBA players and couldn’t even make the NCAA, the drunk deserves to be out of college ball altogether, or at Louisville (IDK WHICH IS WORSE LOLOL)

  7. UKFootballFan
    11:35 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    Scrooge and A Christmas Carol is one of my favorite stories about Christmas. Makes me think of evil bosses. Motto of the day. Do not be a scrooge. Appreciate and respect your employees.

  8. SoFLCat
    11:41 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    What’s a hundred years? No biggee.

  9. Drew Franklin
    11:43 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    Facts are optional.

  10. snarkster
    11:51 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    That “Bad Idea” t-shirt girl is the best idea I’ve seen all year.

  11. Tubbys gone
    11:59 pm December 18, 2012 Permalink

    #6 looks like your BCG article is inaccurate too. Meeks was Tubbys guy that your correct about. Miller was a UK fan but in know way was he a lock for UK. BCG recruited and signed him. Patterson was never committed to Tubby, Never if he had committed to Tubby chances are good Tubby would have stayed at UK at least 1 more year. You are confusing Patersons mother saying UK would have made the final cut of 3 schools with being committed as a matter of fact his mother latter said he was a Duke lean untill BCG won him over thats the facts!
    BCG didn’t have 5 NBA players he had 5 players who developed into NBA players huge difference. Patterson and Meeks where injured a lot of that time don’t forget that. harrellson was no where near a NBA player under BCG or even after a year with Cal. Miller was a freshmen and no where near a Pro at that time it took him 3 years under Cal to develope into the Player he is now. Meeks did pretty well under BCG scoring 62 in 1 game. BCG was a ass for sure but he left UK better then he found it. Tubby is the man responsible for tanking UK. That’s a fact

  12. sonny lesbos
    12:02 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    you havent lived until youve seen scrooge mcduck’s version of ebeneezer

  13. Sean D
    12:07 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    I remember 100 years ago when Meeks committed to Billy G.

  14. Facts facts
    12:07 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    11, you are right until you talked about Meeks total points in a game, it was 54, not 62.

  15. tyson
    12:21 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    The decision to fire Joker was made before the Vandy game. Mitch and Joker hoped for a miracle win as an excuse to keep Joker at least until the end of the season. If he had won the last 3 games he would be here next year.

    Mitch is completely arrogant and cannot relate to fans. That is partially why he is a below average fundraiser. He let his personal feelings for Joker get in the way of his job. He took his anger at having to fire his friend out on the fans, as seen in his pre-Vandy radio interview. He should be reprimanded for those comments and apologize to UK fans.

    All that said, I am excited for next season and really enjoyed the Neal Brown press conference. After Stoops is successful here and leaves us for something bigger and better, I hope the Joker Phillips Experiment doesn’t keep Brown from getting a shot at the HC position.

  16. Catfan68
    12:38 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    @5 Isaac, well said…all this loser ever does is spew his negative crap about UK…he is obviously a UofL fan so instead of being called “UK Freshmen”, he should change his name to “UofL five year player that coach just kicked off the team to make room for a better recruit”…man it must really suck to be a UofL fan and be so jealous of UK that all they can do is be a troll on our site.

  17. SeaCat
    1:31 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    BBall: if we can’t cure WCS’s shortness
    of breath, this season is over.
    To salvage (final 4) this season we need
    1) an awesome Ryan Harrow, and
    2) WCS without asthma

    Cal will get Archie and Poythress on
    track, eventually, but if we have to
    depend on Wiltjer and Polson, this
    season will be a bust.

  18. SayHarrowToTheRepeat
    2:00 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    To go along with what 6 said, I didn’t think McClintock ever committed either.

    @10, ๐Ÿ˜€

  19. dustin
    2:19 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    Les Miles is the most poplar coach on twitter. Let’s change that BBN. Stoops poops ice cream!

  20. mocha
    2:20 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    Drew, if you’re going to plagiarize Wikipedia for your post, word for word, at least give credit:

    You guys give everyone else a hard time for this junk, stop it yourselves already.

  21. BPsycho
    3:48 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    “plagiarize Wikipedia”


  22. BoomKentucky
    7:13 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

  23. SexnNursinHomes
    7:24 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    10- I totally agree. I love how her tan lines make me smile everytime.

    21- I know. Wikipedia, the real source for all that is true

    If anyone is in the Orlando area, there is a Tranny version of a Christmas Carol starring some burly fat guy dressed as Carol Channing. It’s pretty good. @ The Parliment House.

  24. Interview
    7:34 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    Interviewer: Mitch, what do you have to say about the fans who say you aren’t qualified to pick a football coach, you know, with your record and all:

    UK Football Before Barnhart: 51% Winning Percentage
    UK Football After Barnhart: 42% Winning Percentage

    That’s 10 years worth Mitch.

    Mitch: I don’t worry about my critics.

    Interviewer: OK, well what do you have to say about the record of the football program while you’ve been the AD at UK?

    Mitch: That sounds like criticism, so I’m not going to worry about you.

    Interviewer: Mitch, you have to be held accountable for 10 years worth of football. The facts indicate you don’t know football.

    Your answer is to throw $10 Million at a head coach who’s never been to a bowl game?

    Mitch: I beg your pardon. Stoops is a legend. He won a National Championship at Oklahoma. Kentucky Football is in great hands.

  25. RealCatsFan
    7:45 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    Scrooge was actually visited by four spirits, not three – the first spirit was Marley’s ghost, who appeared before him with a haze of pot smoke with dreadlocks, a big sack of gonja and huge joint in his mouth, telling Scrooge to “Lighten up – Eets Christmas, mon!” Oops, wrong Marley – reminds me of a favorite Christmas card.

    Actually, the best modern representation we have of Scrooge would be Mitch McConnel and most of the Republican party. ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. HeshimuEvans'2ndGradeTeacher
    8:27 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    #25 – Lol nice.

  27. Joe
    8:27 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    Actually, the best modern representation we have of Scrooge would be Mitch McConnel and most of the Republican party.

    Yeah because being generous with someone else’s money a la Obama is the HEIGHT of Christian Charity….it’s a sports site, leave the politics at the door, or expect some push back.

  28. BurlyFatGuyInOrlando
    8:30 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    #23 – Come on, man. Lol Burly and fat? You know I prefer burly!

  29. bigcat76
    8:33 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    The BCG list makes me wanna puke when I think about how bad it could have gotten. Thank you Coach Cal.

  30. SexnNursinHomes
    8:36 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    28- hahaha. Don’t do the splits this year. You left a brown spot on the stage last year.

  31. UK Fan
    8:41 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    The thing that Tipton and Bobby Knight have in common with Scrooge is their bitterness toward life. What a waste of energy to be so angry all the time.

  32. hellcat
    8:44 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    #23 – Are you refering to the Parliament House on OBT near Amelia street? If so, no thanks. LMAO!!! I prefer my women to be real women! Stay thirsty my friends.

  33. Tired Of Being 1 of 12 Games
    8:48 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    The Vandy game? If it took until the Vandy game for mitch to see it was not working he is a fool.

  34. red headed step child
    9:25 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    25, you are retarded. Your always bashing the republicans. Why? Do you not realize that most of UK’s fundraising comes from COAL? The coal industry is under attack by the Dem. Party. You better put down the rag weed and start paying attention.

  35. BurlyFatGuyInOrlando
    9:26 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    #30 – lol Then don’t cry for an encore this yr for god’s sake

  36. wrong
    9:42 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    11 ur wrong 6 was right about miller I grew up with the kid and played on his mason co bball team he was goin to UK regardless according to himself that is

  37. Millie
    9:44 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    I really want this staff to succeed. However, Barhart’s interview only reinforced my negative feelings towards him. How many times did he say he didn’t care in that interview. It’s his job to care or at least give the public perception that he cares. Like I have said many times, Barnhart has a lot of negatives. And he did nothing to change my mind today and honestly I was kind of hoping he would. There was a time I actually liked Mitch Barnhart.

  38. James K
    9:44 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    It’s either the Muppet Christmas Carol, Scrooged (starring Bill Murray) or nothing.

  39. UKBlue1!
    9:49 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    Fire Barnhart.

  40. Joe
    9:55 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    Fire Barnhart.

    Yeah because he’s only brought us Cal and made UK one of the top 5 Sports Programs in the nation…I know Football sucks, and this is different how?

    Give it a rest, Petrino isn’t coming, nor should he.

  41. UKBlue1!
    10:00 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    #40 He hired Billy Clyde Gillespie, he was forced to hire Calipari. Big difference.

  42. SexnNursinHomes
    10:01 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    32- hell yeah!! if you don’t mind your girls with a pair down below. hahah!

    35- hahahahah!!!

  43. Reality
    10:05 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    #40 – Joe – Barnhart wouldn’t hire Calipari in 2007 because he was too big of a risk.

    Yet, 2 years later, he had no choice. Take the risk and live with it.

    Integrity isn’t a pick and chose attribute.

  44. Joe
    10:06 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    #40 He hired Billy Clyde Gillespie, he was forced to hire Calipari. Big difference. No, he hired Calipari INSPITE of Pratt and others…see how this works, without any evidence, either story is true…bring some evidence for your claim, otherwise that’s all it is, some big-mouthed, claim.

    Also, I notice you miss, again, the fact that UK PROGRAM, as a whole is doing great, and that Football is bad, as usual.

  45. Craig
    10:12 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    As mentioned by others the list was a bit inaccurate, but to add a few other BCG guys:

    Alex Legion transferred to Illinois where he played the second semester his sophmore year, and first semester of Junior year before leaving the team. Transferred to FIU and played 10 games averaging 13 points before being kicked off the team. Currently playing in Hungary where he’s averaging 21 ppg.

    Matt Pilgrim finished his career at Oklahoma state, played one year in Turkey, and is currently averaging 5 ppg for French team Challans.

    Kevin Galloway played his senior year at Texas Southern averaging 11 points, 7 rebounds, and 6 assists. Played a year in the D league before going to Japan where he averages 18.6 pts, 9.4 rebounds, 6.1 assists for HAMAMATSU-HIGASHI MIKAWA PHOENIX.

  46. UKBlue1!
    10:15 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    Joe you either have a short memory or you are a friend of Mitch. He wouldn’t hire Calipari in 2007. He offered Billy Donavan, he turned it down 2x. He flirted with a couple of other coaches…Barns and I think Izzo. When he got got pressure from former players like Pratt and Casey from his death bed he started looking at Calipari. This guy is a clown. He allowed Guy Morris to leave and go to Baylor. He hired a old man Brooks. This turned out ok because UL fell flat from the Kragthorpe era. If UL was winning UK wouldn’t have qualified for 2 of the 4 bowl games. I hope Stoops works out but he is a major risk. He has no experience and because he is last name is Stoops doesn’t mean he will be anything like BOB. Just ask MIKE and Arizona!

  47. Joe
    10:23 am December 19, 2012 Permalink

    This guy is a clown. He allowed Guy Morris to leave and go to Baylor. He hired a old man Brooks.

    So again a simple ASSERTION, without evidence…and he let Guy Morris go…who went onto such great heights at Baylor…OH WAIT. And”Old Man Brooks” you mean the guy that gave us the best consecutive years of UK Football in 50 years, that old man Brooks, that “failure?”

    Facts, really aren’t your friends are they. You like knowing what you know, irrespective of reality.