SEC Football: Top 10 Radio Play-by-Play Announcers of All Time
Bert Bank, the father of the Alabama Crimson Tide Sports Network.
Many great football voices have come and gone over the years.
Dwindling the list to just 10 will certainly make some folks angry and others just plain mad.
Radio voices may be the least heard these days, with television broadcasting so many of the SEC football games. However, when not near a television, the best way to experience a football game without being there is listening to these guys call a game.
Each have their own style and signature. Each of them love their teams. Each of them love bringing the game to fans every week.
This list is certainly debatable, and I hope readers will share with me their displeasure. Hopefully, others will agree with my top 10 play-by-play men of all time.
10. Mick Hubert: Florida Gators
With a voice well known throughout the state of Florida, Mike Hubert has been calling Gators football for 23 seasons.
His signature saying, "Oh my!" lets Gator Nation know something good has happened for their Florida team.
9. David Kellum: Ole Miss
David Kellum is in his 34th year as a broadcaster for the Ole Miss Rebels. A native of Oxford, he became the baseball play-by-play announcer as a freshman at Ole Miss in 1978.
Currently, Kellum handles football, baseball and basketball duties for the Rebels.
8. Rod Bramblett: Auburn
Rod Bramblett had a tough job—replacing a legend. That legend is on this list and is ranked higher.
But Bramblett took it in stride, and he has now become a familiar voice for the Auburn Tigers. A voice most fans say they would not replace.
Bramblett has been the voice of Auburn baseball since 1993. In 1998, began hosting the Auburn call-in show on a weekly basis.
7. Jim Hawthorne: LSU
Jim Hawthorne is another legendary voice in college sports.
Beginning his 29th year as voice of the LSU Tigers, Hawthorne has called many exciting games.
He has been in the booth for both LSU BCS titles, all six LSU College World Series titles and all three LSU basketball Final Four appearances.
6. Eli Gold: Alabama
Nobody has a resume quite like Eli Gold.
Some consider Gold to be the "Gold Standard" of current play-by-play announcers. The voice of the Alabama Crimson Tide since 1988, Gold has given Tide fans reason to cheer for over two decades.
For 12 years, Gold climbed the ladder by taking on a difficult task, doing radio for numerous hockey leagues. His resume includes play-by-play duties for the St. Louis Blues and Nashville Predators.
Gold also served as the first radio man for UAB basketball when Gene Bartow began the program. He held that position for six years before taking the job in the Tide's football booth.
Gold has been the voice of the Arena Football League, is a member of NASCAR's MRN and continues to call SportsRadioUSA games, including NFL and college bowl games.
5. Paul Eells: Vanderbilt and Arkansas
While Paul Eells is best known for his time as the voice of the Razorbacks, he also served as Vanderbilt's most esteemed radio announcer for 11 years.
From 1967-1978, Eells called Vanderbilt's football and basketball contests before moving west to Arkansas.
He led Arkansas broadcasts for 27 seasons following his stint at Vandy.
He was killed suddenly in a head-on car collision in 2006.
4. John Forney: Alabama
John Forney was the Alabama Crimson Tide's voice for 19 years. He called most of the Alabama football championships during Paul "Bear" Bryant's tenure, including the "Goal Line Stand" against Penn State.
He hosted the "Bear" Bryant Show and the Gene Stallings Show during his career. He was also the man who announced the renewal of the Alabama-Auburn football game on closed circuit television.
3. Jim Fyffe: Auburn
For 22 years, Auburn fans heard the unmistakable voice of Jim Fyffe.
"Touchdown Auburn," he would yell. The broadcaster was a legend in his time and still is today.
Nobody can match the excitement shown by Fyffe during Auburn football games. The excitement he held is captured in one of his most memorable calls, in 1987 versus Georgia Tech.
Auburn conducted a 91-yard drive to the end zone, capped by a touchdown catch from Lawyer Tillman.
"Touchdown Auburn! Touchdown Auburn! Touchdown Auburn! Tillman! Tillman! Tillman!"
After Fyffe's passing in 2005, Auburn AD David Housel said in a press release, "There will be other voices, but no one else will carry the excitement and enthusiasm Jim did. He had a special talent and he used that talent in a special way for the glory of Auburn. As long as people remember what has happened here in the last 20 years, 20 of the best years in Auburn history, they will remember Jim. He will forever more be a very special part of it. I've lost a friend, Auburn has lost a patriot."
2. John Ward and Bill Anderson: Tennessee
"It's football time in Tennessee," John Ward would say to open each football season.
From 1969-1998, Ward and Bill Anderson were behind the microphone during every Vols football game. The two were the longest running broadcast team in college football.
His last game was the 1999 Fiesta Bowl, when Tennessee won the first BCS national championship game.
The two will always be remembered by Vols fans as the undisputed "Voice of the Volunteers."
1. Larry Munson: Georgia and Vanderbilt
This one isn't even close.
From 1966-2008, Larry Munson was the "Voice of the Dawgs." His sudden retirement was unexpected but met with respect.
Munson began his career in Wyoming and later moved to Nashville. There, he was the voice of Vandy for 19 years. He was offered a job while at spring training for the Atlanta Braves in 1966.
He accepted at Georgia, and the rest is history.
He called one of the most memorable moments in Georgia history, the 1982 Auburn game. Georgia clinched another SEC title, and here's the call.
"Timeout, 49 seconds left. 4th-and-17, I know I'm asking a lot you guys, but Hunker it down one more time! Pass into the end zone, and the Dogs broke it up! They broke it up! The Dogs with 42 seconds.
"I won't ask you to do that again, you guys. 32 seconds, Lastinger up to the line. Lastinger falls back on the 16. Georgia students standing and roaring.
"23, 22, 21 clock running, running. Oh, look at the sugar falling out of the sky! Look at the sugar falling out of the sky! Here comes a Georgia fan running out across the field. And now everybody roars, 3, 2, 1, and they're carrying Vince Dooley off the field.
"Dogs have won it. Somebody threw something on us. Dogs have won it 19-14. The defense hunkered this thing down."