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ESPN's Rick Reilly goes for laughs in graduation speech/eulogy for CU journalism school

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ESPN's Rick Reilly has a wicked sense of humor -- which made him the perfect choice to bid adieu to the final graduating class of CU's journalism school, which officially shuts down June 30 in favor of what's dubbed a "journalism-plus program." And in his speech to grads, he worked in some yuks along with a defense of a field that's taken a battering in recent years.

Prior to his talk, Reilly shared some of his material with the Denver Post's Bill Husted, including this riff: ""So, you guys are the last graduating class from the CU J-school. And I'm the last Distinguished Alumnus guy from this place. I feel like we're christening the Hindenburg here. It's like, 'Hey, congratulations, you made the last really good buggy whip! Turn off the lights when you leave, OK?'"

But those lines didn't make the Boulder Daily Camera's piece on the event, which juxtaposed gags about his beer-soaked graduation gown with his claim that without journalism, "the digital house of cards will fold" with no help from bloggers, who are better at holding down couch springs in their mothers' basement than digging up documents or interviewing people.

As for the grads themselves, a Camera video below shows several torn about CU's attempt to save the program by dismantling it and trying to reassemble it again in a different form -- and no wonder. Here's that clip:

More from our Media archive: "After botched Colorado Rockies prediction, Rick Reilly pledges to "tongue bathe" Denver capitol building."

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