Lovable TV host Regis Philbin - known for mouthing off and making loud declarations of athletic superiority - may be meeting his match on Monday morning's "Live with Regis & Kelly" - when he faces off against a Knoxville-area college athlete.
Philbin has announced (in a very bragging way) that he will take on Ken Mink, the 73-year-old student who plays on Roane State Community College's team. The play-off can be seen at 9 a.m. on WVLT, Channel 8.
It should be good TV. After all, Philbin is 77, but refers to Mink as "a young man." Nonetheless, an alleged geezer such as Philbin thinks he can take on Mink and squash him on the court.
We'll be the judge of that.
Mink has garnered national acclaim after word about him being the oldest college basketball player in the history of education - from the dawn of time, some say - was revealed in the News Sentinel in October. The New York Times did a spread of him a couple of days ago, capturing Philbin's eye and spurring the TV personality to issue an on-air challenge to Mink.
This game between the two spry guys will come halfway through "Regis & Kelly," in between guests like Rosario Dawson and the winner of "Survivor: Gabon" (to be named Sunday night).
And that ain't all, honey.
Mink's 68-year-old wife, Emilia, will be on the sidelines, wearing a cheerleader's uniform and urging on her man. The Minks live in Farragut.
Philbin has a knack for challenging mature athletes. Last month, he mouthed off and took on an elderly woman who is a table tennis champion. She whipped him.
Now he is determined to take on Mink, a former News Sentinel entertainment editor (and an ancestor to the Tele-buddy; Mink used to be the paper's TV critic, too).
As to how well Philbin will do against Mink, even folks connected to the show aren't sure.
"We don't how well he can play," one source at the show says. "I guess we'll find out."
Terry Morrow may be reached at email@example.com or 865-342-6445. His blog can be found at blogs.knoxnews.com/knx/telebuddy/. He contributes to "Live @ Five @ Four" on WBIR, Channel 10, and "The Marc & Kim & Frank Show" on WWST-FM, 102.1.
© 2008, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
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