With the 2015 college football season starting, fans are busily getting into the mood to watch the games on TV each Saturday. But just who are they listening to? Who are these college football announcers that we hear every week? And how good of a job do they do?
Every fan has a favorite team and the radio voice of that team is the one that they would prefer to listen to. Some will turn down the TV audio and listen to the game over the radio. We’ve all done that!
But as we scan the TV we run into so many voices broadcasting the games. As I was looking at some college football articles on the computer the other day I saw a listing of the “best college football announcers.” Of course, this was only TV guys and did not mention any radio announcers. I’ll share the list with you and then make a few comments.
This list is a compilation of a number of opinions from writers who have covered college football for many years. It is not one person’s opinion. Here goes! In reverse order!
(25) Rece Davis; (24) Gary Danielson; (23) Jesse Palmer; (22) Ara Parseghian; (21) Pat Haden; (20) Joe Tessitore; (19) Gus Johnson; (18) Charles Davis; (17) Bud Wilkinson; (16) Charlie Jones; (15) Sean McDonough; (14) Lindsey Nelson; (13) Dick Enberg; (12) Curt Gowdy; (11) Todd Blackledge; (10) Chris Schenkel; (9) Bob Greise; (8) Ron Franklin; (7) Chris Fowler; (6) Brad Nessler; (5) Frank Broyles; (4) Kirk Herbstreit; (3) Vern Lundquist; (2) Brent Musberger: (1) Keith Jackson.
Well, what do you think? Are there possibly some on here that you have never heard of? Probably. I have heard of all of them, but certainly don’t agree with the listing and I’m sure that I am not alone.
My first comment would be that Musberger should not be on any list of top announcers. He is horrible and makes so many mistakes it is comical. It is good to see the names of Schenkel, Nelson, Wilkinson, and Gowdy on the list as their mentions brings back memories of a time when there were just a few games on TV each week and these guys were very good during that period. They deserve mention.
Although I love his last name, Chris Fowler is ranked too high and to even have Rece Davis, Jesse Palmer and Charles Davis on the list is a stretch. I also wouldn’t include Haden, Greise, Tessitore and Johnson.
Many fans don’t like the Lundquist and Danielson duo but I disagree. I like the pair and certainly think they should be on the list. I would rate Danielson much high than 24, probably in the Top 15, but Lundquist probably doesn’t rate a ranking as high as his number 3.
Yeah, I can agree with Keith Jackson being #1. He was a unique broadcaster with a tone that became synonymous with the college game. His only problem is that he may have hung around a few years too long. With all that being said, he is a clear #1.
My favorite guy on the whole list is Brad Nessler. He is the rising star of this whole bunch and I think should be a #1 broadcaster for some network. He is smooth, accurate, knowledgeable, and experienced. His style makes you feel comfortable with the broadcast while at the same time gives you a sense of the excitement of the game. He’s my guy!
Well, anyone can compose a list and there are surely more lists out there that include college football broadcasters. I just ran across this one and found it interesting. I hope you did too!
Jim Fowler is a sports columnist and retired teacher and coach who worked in the local school system for many years. He is a founding board member of the Thomaston-Upson Sports Hall of Fame and is also the statistician for the Upson Lee football team, and has written a book about the history of football at R. E. Lee High School.