The college football world lost its most prominent voice on Friday night. Former ABC sports broadcaster Keith Jackson, who is considered the best play-by-play announcer in the history of the sport, died at the age of 89. The news was announced by Todd Harris, a former colleague of Jackson’s who currently works for NBC Sports.
While he did play-by-play for a number of sports during his career spanning more than 50 years, Jackson is most well known for his work in the broadcast booth for college football games. Picking a single best call from Jackson is impossible — his smooth voice, an inherent love of college football, and the uncanny ability to pick his spots regarding providing analysis and letting the gravity of a moment speak for itself were a staple of Saturdays every fall.
Here is an attempt at singling out a handful of his best, highlighted by the most poetic ending a broadcasting career has ever had: Jackson calling Vince Young scampering into the end zone to win a national title for Texas at the 2006 Rose Bowl, giving the sport’s greatest announcer one last special moment in perhaps the greatest game that college football has ever seen.