There have been many lists and rankings about athlete and coach meltdowns. We have all seen George Brett charging the field, Hal McRae tear apart his office, players fighting or Bob Knight being himself, but what about the announcers that bring us the action?
Announcers are supposed to be the objective source of information about the game. Granted, your home town announcers may not be as objective, but their job is still to describe the action as fairly as possible.
Every once in a while though, an announcer comes unglued. From on air play-by-play, the studio host, the local TV sports guy or sports radio there are tons of opportunities for sportscasters to lose it.
Here are eight of the more memorable incidents.
Warning: Some of the audio links contain strong language. I will have a warning on the bottom of a slide if that link contains swearing or other possibly offensive content.
Ever wonder what Marty Brennaman thinks of the Chicago Cub fans? Well, now you know.
The Cubs were playing the Cincinnati Red’s—Brennaman's employer—during a game in 2008. When Adam Dunn hit a homerun, Cubs fans took their tradition of throwing the ball back a little too far for Ole Marty’s taste.
Apparently never winning the Super Bowl weighs heavy on the mind of Marino.
The look of those around the table is priceless. I’m not sure how they did not burst out laughing—although it was probably better for them that they were able to contain the laughter.
You may be surprised to see a high school game on the list, but this one is just too good not to mention—the added bonus of the other voice in the background screaming just adds to the fun.
This game matched two rival teams who were both undefeated. Abington was leading 12-7 with about three minutes left in the game. They appeared to score again to seal the victory, but the refs blew the call. Rockland was able to come back and win 21-12.
I guarantee you will laugh the next time year hear someone say nuts or bolts.
Chris Berman is the merry announcer on ESPN. He joined the network one month into its existence and has remained there in various roles ever since. He is known for his playful calls and creative nicknames for players.
In 2000 though, we learned that he just cannot stand it when people move around.
Without seeing the movement it is hard to know if what set him off was really that big of a deal, but it is hard to imagine that the offense is worthy of the anger he displayed.
The odd part about this one is that the voice you hear talking and whistling is not that of either of the announcers in the booth.
Apparently this guy really had some place to be and was mad that the missed field goal was going to add 90 seconds to his commute. No one seems to know if the voice is from someone back in the studio, in the production truck or someone else in the booth. The two real announcers did not hear it, which is why they did not react to it.
Ufer was the voice of the University of Michigan football team for 37 years. His love and passion for the team began when he was a student and track team member there. On this day in 1973, the Wolverines would be playing their hated arch enemy—the Ohio State Buckeyes.
This meltdown was in the midst of the famed "Ten Year War" between legendary coaches Bo Schembechler and Woody Hayes. Ohio State would enter the contest ranked No.1 while Michigan was ranked fourth. A rivalry matchup is always big, but with a Big Ten title and possible National Championship at risk this game was huge.
The Buckeyes decided to mount a full scale invasion on Michigan’s home field and Ufer wasn't too happy about that.
It is not often you get someone mad enough that they want players scalped while still being composed and articulate enough to utter the phrase unmitigated gall.
The game ended in a 10-10 tie.
A 2010 game between Arkansas State and Florida Atlantic sent Lamont over the edge. Initially, he is upset over the helmet to helmet hit and he stays under control. At about a minute in though, he lets loose.
In the minutes leading up to the full blown outburst Lamont is slowly building steam. You can tell he is mad, but this meltdown was completely unexpected.
Sports Illustrated deemed this “the single finest rant ever heard on sports talk radio” and it is hard to disagree.
Detroit radio host Mike Valenti goes off on his beloved Spartans after they chocked against Norte Dame in 2006.
While it is not difficult to find radio sports guys going nuts—it seems to be part of the ratings grab to have these guys guy go of—this one is different. Mike Valenti is a Michigan State graduate and proud supporter of his team, which helps make this rant different from any other on radio.
What you hear is a fan that is beyond fed up with their team. Just about every fan out there has been in Valenti’s position. Many of us have rooted for teams despite bad losses, bad seasons or bad decades even. He had the opportunity to pour his heart out on a large platform and he took it.
You will never hear someone rant with such passion, anger, pain and humor while still making some extremely clear, rational and valid points. It is a mix that has to be heard to truly appreciate. His voice is completely shot by the end of it. The clip is long but well worth the listen.
After hearing it, I became a fan of Mike and his show. His co-host tries to reel him in but he just keeps going. You have to love that passion.
He ended up not being able to finish the show and missed the next day of work due to lack of voice.
You have to respect that amount of passion and angst.
The episode is in three links (the first is the one from above):