MOBILE, Ala. – College football is losing a significant voice that made the sport’s pageantry come alive for so many.
On Wednesday, ESPN announced Brent Musburger is retiring from announcing. His final broadcast will happen next Tuesday when Kentucky hosts Georgia at Rupp Arena.
Musburger, 77, has worked as a play-by-play announcer or a host for a variety of events throughout his career, including the Super Bowl, MLB playoffs and NBA Finals. But he became associated with some of college football’s largest games over time. Recently, he called contests on the SEC Network.
A variety of voices were asked about Musburger’s impact during Senior Bowl practices Wednesday at Ladd-Peebles Stadium. Here are a few of the responses:
Gus Malzahn, Auburn coach
“It’s kind of sad to hear, from my standpoint. You grow up listening to somebody — he’s like a legend. He’s one of the best to ever do it. So, it’s kind of a sad deal.”
Dalvin Tomlinson, former Alabama defensive lineman
“I’ve heard so many (things) in recent years, and he’s a great broadcaster. And a lot of people, a lot of players and coaches all around, have respect for him. … Just the excitement he brought to the table when he was broadcasting the game (was special). If it was a close game, he was going to make it even closer just by the way he was broadcasting. He’s just a great person. I wish I could meet him one day.”
Jeremy Sprinkle, former Arkansas tight end
“Just growing up, just listening to him call the games, it was always good. Just to hear how enthusiastic he was, just his pride for the game (was memorable). Just listening to him, he always brought joy to the fans.”
Toby Baker, former Arkansas punter
“When you hear that voice, you know it’s a big game. Whenever you hear him say, ‘You’re looking live,’ you know it’s a big game, man. … It’s a huge impact. When you watch the game, the commentators, you really only hear that voice when they come on TV a little bit. But it really brings a different element to the game when you’re watching (a big game) rather than an 11 a.m. game that you’re watching just to watch it. And you’re just kind of like, ‘OK, let’s get through the day, and let’s get to the game that Brent’s calling.’”
Art Briles, former Baylor coach
“He did our Oklahoma State game in 2013, when they beat us up there. That’s the only time I’ve met him personally. I met him before the game and then after. The thing I appreciated, first of all, he just had a lot of grace it seemed like, a lot of care for the players and the coaches and the situation. He just seemed like a really genuine human being, which is pretty good to be these days.”