By LARRY VAUGHT
A fixture for Kentucky football and basketball for 40 years is going to be missing this season. Oscar Combs announced on Twitter today that he would not be part of the pregame football and basketball shows on the UK Radio Network.
Combs came to Lexington from Hazard where he ran the Hazard Herald to start The Cats’ Pause weekly magazine in 1976. It was Twitter before there was social media and his column especially became a must read weekly for UK fans.
Combs, who is in the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame, has been around UK athletics since 1976. He has had the ear of Kentucky football and basketball coaches, but more importantly he’s had the ear of UK fans and became a voice for the average fan.
Combs posted this message on Twitter: “I won’t go into details why I decided to turn to another chapter in my life, but I will still be around on Twitter & perhaps other venues.”
So what happened? Was Combs asked to step down? Does he have something else he would rather do on game day than let UK fans get his insights on the season, team and more?
Combs won’t say. He’s not that kind of man.
He’s my friend and has been for years. He took a big chance letting a young guy from Danville write for The Cats’ Pause in 1976 and let me make a name for myself with UK athletics and fans. Without him, I would not be doing all the things I am today.
He’s always been a mentor — and was again when I suddenly had to strike out on my own in January. His advice is what you need to hear and not just what you want to hear. But if you know him, you respect him.
I can’t imagine a UK football or basketball season without Oscar. I’ve been covering UK sports since 1975 and I have never had a season without him. So I certainly hope he stays active on Twitter, but also continues to entertain, inform and charm us on other venues.
Goodbye for now, friend, but come back to see us all soon.