By DAVID MARTIN
Guys who talk about sports for a living can get into trouble when they veer into politics.
On a recent installment of Between the Lines on 810 WHB, host Kevin Kietzman drew a flummoxed difference between politicians and sports figures. Kietzman talked about how strange it was that coaches acted like gentlemen next to dirt-slinging candidates for public office.
Kietzman’s right to suggest that KU basketball coach Bill Self talks less trash than Bill Clinton. But the reasons should be obvious: Politics is a hearts-and-mind game, fought between people whose policy ideas may be indistinguishable. Sports rivalries, by contrast, determine winners and losers on fields and courts of battle, where opinion means nothing. (The exception, of course, is boxing, whose combatants freely trade literal and figurative jabs.)
Kietzman shared his thoughts with play-by-play man Kevin Harlan, who came up with a gaffe of his own. Citing a book about Abraham Lincoln he recently read, Harlan said that rough-and-tumble politics were hardly new. Harlan then said that Lincoln had jousted with “Frederick Douglass,” confusing the abolitionist with debate partner Stephen Douglas.