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Who's Got the Funk? AP's Got the Funk

The Mayor is smiling because he has the no. 1 overall pick in his fantasy league.
About a week ago, I had the inkling to get inside Kansas City Mayor Mark Funkhouser's head and talk about sports. The Mayor of Kansas City holds a special place in Chiefs lore because it was Mayor Bartle's nickname of "The Chief" years ago that gave the franchise its name. As a tax-paying Kansas City metro area voter who runs a website that gets over 20,000 monthly visitors, Mayor Funkhouser kindly obliged to answer my questions. I know the Mayor is busy so I kept the questions short and sweet but still interesting (I hope anyway). The Mayor and his staff were exceptionally polite and I'm still amazed they let a bum like myself ask the Mayor a few questions. Keep up the good work Mayor Funkhouser.

Growing up in West Virginia, who were your sports heroes and what sports did you play?

Growing up, Celtics Center Bill Russell was my sports hero. I wanted to emulate his style on defense and the way he blocked shots. I don’t have natural talent with regard to ball handling and shooting. It seemed to me that emulating Russell was my best shot at success. And it did earn me a college scholarship to play basketball at Thiel College. There were 60 students in my high school class, and I was a mediocre varsity athlete in football, basketball and track. I threw the discus and ran the high hurdles. As a younger kid, I played baseball, but terribly.

Your education over the years had you living in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Tennessee and finally Kansas City. Which college program do you root for now or are you forever a Thiel College Tomcat?

I don’t scan the internet box scores for the Tomcat listings, but I do feel good when I happen to notice West Virginia has won a game. As a Missourian, it may not be the political answer, but I have to admit that I follow KU Jayhawks basketball. I appreciate good basketball, and that’s good basketball.

If you had to choose between a mayoral victory and a Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl victory, which would you choose?

Here I will defer to politics and take a pass on that.

Without looking, can you name six starters on the Kansas City Chiefs?

Sure. Wait, do I have to list them? [Ed.: I fully expect the Mayor to be by the site anytime to prove he can do this.]

What is the greatest sports moment you've been a part of- watched, played in or otherwise?

I couldn’t tell you the year, but I watched an NCAA basketball tournament final when Bill Walton played for UCLA. I was kind of a Walton fan, and he had a run where I believe he shot 100 percent from the floor, rebounding, shot blocking. UCLA won, but just barely. It was the most remarkable single performance I’ve ever seen.

Finally, who is your pick to start the season at quarterback- Brodie Croyle or Damon Huard?

I know Damon is going to be injured still so it will be Brodie. Can that be one of my six starters?

The Mayor is obviously on top of his game. Thanks again Mayor Funkhouser. We all appreciate you taking the time to let us in on your sports experiences.

It's Game Time.

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