For the next week or so we’ll be previewing all of the mid-major teams to qualify for the men’s NCAA Basketball Tournament, because honestly, what do you know about them? Right now: Eastern Kentucky.
Likely to be seeded No. 15, EKU could spell danger for their first opponent: No one wants to play the Colonels. Or, to quote Eastern Kentucky’s most famous fictional Deputy U.S. Marshall, Raylan Givens: “Honestly, I think I’d rather stick my dick in a blender.” (Attention, Duke).
— Michael Grant (@MichaelGrant_CJ) March 13, 2014
Third time I've seen EKU and come away impressed. Enough shooters, slashers to scare a high seed if they make it and get the right matchup.
— Jeff Eisenberg (@JeffEisenberg) March 8, 2014
The Angry Colonel Sanders’ qualified for NCAA Tournament Festivities in the Ohio Valley Conference championship game on Saturday with a 79-73 win over Belmont, which had made the tourney six of the past eight seasons. Senior Corey Walden led EKU with 29 points, and the NCAA Tourney should be a good showcase for him — Walden also won OVC Defensive Player of the Year.
Let’s meet the Colonels:
EASTERN KENTUCKY COLONELS
Record: 24-9 (11-5).
Conference: Ohio Valley.
Quality Wins: IPFW, Belmont.
Last NCAA Appearance: 2007.
Location: Richmond, Kentucky.
Notable Alumni: Dan Patrick, Lee Majors, Rex Ryan.
— Cork Gaines (@CorkGaines) March 11, 2014
Strengths: Experience, shooting percentage, fast pace.
Weaknesses: Defense, rebounding.
Secret Weapon: Eric Stutz’s long, flowing mane.
Mascot: The Colonel.
In Oct. of 2013, retired EKU professor William Ellis wrote letters to both the student newspaper and the Richmond Register, calling for a new mascot. Ellis contends that the Colonel has racist overtones (the University of Mississippi replaced their mascot, Colonel Reb, with a costumed bear in 2012).
“The Colonel mascot was anachronistic even when it was chosen and is even more out-dated in the early 21st century,” wrote Ellis, the author of The History of Education in Kentucky. “Even the modern redesign of the Colonel logo a few years ago is of no help in separating Eastern Kentucky University from a bygone era.”
EKU President Michael Benson, however, said that the university has no plans to replace The Colonel.
"I lost a testical at a party. I spent 2 nights in the hospital. #ItHappens " – EKU
— Collegefession™ (@collegefession) March 2, 2014