Sen. Mitch McConnell campaign video makes headlines for showing Duke, not Kentucky

FRANKFORT, Ky. -- At least Sen. Mitch McConnell didn't show a clip of the Louisville Cardinals celebrating their 2013 NCAA win.

But he did show Duke. And it was a mistake - maybe the ultimate fail during March Madness, especially in the midst of Wildcats fans in full blue and white force.

As AP writer Adam Beam said, McConnell's latest campaign video hit all the necessary Kentucky high points: horse racing, bluegrass - and Duke basketball?

The campaign's Tuesday morning priority was to remove an online campaign video of McConnell's, which showed two Duke Blue Devils players hugging each other after the 2010 national championship game hit the final buzzer.

WATCH: Mitch McConnell campaign video features Duke

Kentucky's Coach John Calipari, players and fans are preparing for the biggest game of the 2014 year, the AP said. Kentucky and Louisville face off in the Sweet 16 on Friday night.

RELATED: UK versus UofL Sweet Sixteen game: 'You are going to have to put your big boy pants on'

But there's a lot of pride in Kentucky when it comes to the state's favorite athletes hitting the court, clad in the "Kentucky blue" and white.

Anyone who's ever seen a game in Rupp Arena has heard the greeting that, game after game, year after year and decades after decades gets fans out of their seats (and finishing their usual soft serve cone): "Ladies and gentleman, welcome to Rupp Arena, home of the greatest tradition in the history of college basketball!"

Yes, Duke's jerseys are blue and white too. But they have two black vertical stripes on either side. Kentucky's do not.

Back at McConnell's office, the mistake rallied a surprise as it hit home. Literally.

"The ad was intended to highlight Kentucky's basketball dominance and obviously the web ad vendor has become so accustomed to watching national championship celebrations in the bluegrass state that they made a mistake with one of the images," McConnell spokesman Allison Moore, a Kentucky graduate, said. "Obviously we were horrified by the error and quickly changed it."

Duke's narrow 1992 win over Kentucky in a regional final of the NCAA Tournament remains a sore spot for many Kentucky fans, and the Blue Devils are still a frequent target for their animosity.

How many blue t-shirts have you seen with "I still hate Laettner" printed in white letters?

A spokeswoman for Alison Lundergan Grimes, McConnell's likely Democratic opponent, quipped that McConnell has "been in Washington so long that he doesn't know the difference between Duke and UK."

Of course, Grimes has already miffed fans by picking Wichita State to beat Kentucky in her tournament bracket. Kentucky won that game 78-76. And she picked Louisville, the state's other top program, to lose to Florida in the championship game.

The video:


Moore, a UK graduate, told the Lexington Herald Leader that neither the schools nor the players were "aware of any image used in this video, and actions have been taken with the vendor to ensure this never happens again."




Print this article Back to Top