“I Thought I Looked Gorgeous…”


As a balding bald man myself, I can sympathize to some extent with Keady: of course we want hair. We all want hair.

But there must be limits to one’s quest. Not to mention, a mirror that isn’t fogged by delusion.

Apparently, Keady had no such mirror back in his Purdue coaching days. Gregg Doyel of the Indy Star writes the unofficial obit for one of the worst hairdo’s in sports history.

“It was ugly,” he says. “Everyone was always asking, ‘What is it? Why are you doing it?’ I did it because I was on TV. I did it because I was going bald. I thought I looked gorgeous with the combover. Of course, it was very ugly.”

Well, it was worse than that. It was obvious. It was embarrassing. It was dyed black and wrapped around his head like a turban.

It wasn’t even real.

“I had extensions,” Keady tells me, at which point I put the phone down and started throwing up. OK, not really. But still. Extensions?

“Well sure,” he says. “Men were just starting to get extensions, so why not?”

I’ve never known a man who had hair extensions.

“Now you do,” Keady says.

Keady knew his hair needed work – what, you think a man can just roll out of bed and look like that? – so he brought in his personal hairdresser twice a week during the season to tidy it up. She came with extensions. She came with hair dye. She came with cream.

She left each time with $300.

You read that right. Gene Keady paid $600 a week to have his hair look like that.

Ooof. I wouldn’t even pay $600 a week to have George Clooney’s hair, much less that hideous.. uh… mudflap contraption.

Thankfully, Keady’s new wife (his first wife died of cancer) convinced him to just lop it off. Whereupon not only did Keady regain a metric ton of self respect, but they also discovered skin cancer underneath and were able to treat it in time for a good outcome.


So in honor of Keady’s sweep-over finally biting the dust… I present to you the unofficial short list of bad “sports” related hairstyles. (Sadly, I could not find a picture the legendary Hubert “Bad Hair” Wimberly of the movie “Dead Solid Perfect”, played by the great character actor Jack Warden).

1. “Big Earn” McCracken – “Kingpin” (1996)


2. Kenny Powers (braided version)


3. Dallas Braden (MLB Analyst)


4. Tony Kornheiser (PTI)


5. Robert Griffin III (Redskins)


6. Michael Cage (1980’s NBA Player)


Your nominations, most welcome.


  1. Bob Costas. Not because his hair necessarily looks crazy on its own, but his mop just seems to . . . . alternate. One week it’s like a bold cabernet with ashy strips around his temples. Then the next week, the whole thing is this weird . . . mahogany. Dude’s gotta be like 65, he should just age gracefully with some salt ‘n pepper. Plus he’s insufferable, preachy, and obnoxious, so there’s that.


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