Throughout July we're on a quest to definitively name the greatest announcing call in the history of sports. We started with a list of 64 (the top 32 of which were seeded) that will be narrowed down to 1 at the end of the month that will earn the greatest of all-time title thanks to your votes. Each day will bring a list of new matchups as we march our way through the tournament. There are certainly some heavy favorites, but also some upsets in the making along the way. Throughout the first round, polls will be open for a day until the next batch of matchups are published.
With a tip of the cap to the WGC Match Play, each bracket will also pay tribute to one of the great announcers in sports. You can check out all the winners from the Gowdy Bracket here and the McKay bracket here. As we move into Day 3, we move to the other side of the bracket for the Pat Summerall region…
1) Go Go USA vs Dickie V's Classic NASCAR finish
8) Joe Carter's home run vs England's World Cup winner
4) Bird's steal vs Gar Heard's jumper
5) Go crazy folks vs The best of Ray Hudson
3) Flutie's Hail Mary vs The slipper still fits
6) Hello Heisman vs App State's upset
2) The band is on the field! vs Miracle at the Meadowlands
7) Yes sir vs Colorado Hail Mary
Here we go…
1) "Go Go USA!"
Was it the moment that truly launched the sport of soccer into American mainstream culture? Only time will tell. But, Ian Darke's dramatic call of Landon Donovan's game-winning goal against Algeria at the 2010 World Cup certainly put the Brit on the American sporting map. Darke is currently ESPN's lead soccer commentator, but his lasting gift is this memorable moment of American sporting history.
"They touch, they touch!"
It was a day like any other in 2003, NASCAR's spring race at Darlington, the "track too tough to tame". But, in the span of 0.002 seconds that all changed as Ricky Craven beat Kurt Busch to the finish line in one of NASCAR's closest and most thrilling finishes. The work done by FOX announcers Mike Joy, Larry McReynolds, and Darrell Waltrip as Busch and Craven nearly wrecked each other over the course of the last two laps was racing at its best, on and off the track.
Winner: Ian Darke 84% – 16%
8) "Touch 'em all Joe!"
Joe Carter's home run to clinch the 1993 World Series for the Blue Jays ironically did more for the pitcher who gave up the home run than anyone involved. Mitch Williams has gained much more from his infamy than Joe Carter ever has for hitting the most important home run in his life. I guess that's how irony works. Tom Cheek needed four words to immortalize Carter's game winner.
"They think it's all over, it is now!"
With the global nature of such an endeavor, we had to include the most famous announcing call in British sport. The 1966 FIFA World Cup Final featured West Germany and England at historic Wembley Stadium in London. The English had never won world soccer's biggest prize, and now was their chance on home soil. In extra time, Geoff Hurst controversially scored his second goal to give England a 3-2 lead. As the game wound down, the crowd rushed the field in a sign of premature celebration. At the same time, Hurst sprinted up field, scored his 3rd goal of the match as fans scurried off the pitch, and sealed England's victory. That moment, captured by the BBC's Kenneth Wolstenholme, is arguably the most famous in the history of British sport.
Winner: Tom Cheek 75% – 25%
4) "What a play by Bird!"
Celtics announcer Johnny Most has more than one entry in our Top 64, and rightfully so as Celtics radio announcer for almost 40 years. While the steal by John Havlicek happened towards the beginning of Most's tenure, this steal by Bird happened towards the end, in 1987. Still, it's hard to hide the shock and glee in Most's voice at the Celtics literally stealing victory from the hated Bad Boys.
"It's good! It's tied again!"
We had to have a call from one of AA's favorites, Brent Musburger. Shockingly, it didn't involve Katherine Webb or a particular brand of tortilla chips. Instead, we go back to the 1976 NBA Finals and the craziest game in NBA Finals history. Gar Heard's shot at the end of the second OT was the climax of a wild set of circumstances that is evidenced by Musburger and Rick Barry's unbridled amazement.
Winner: Johnny Most 54% – 46%
5) "Go crazy folks!"
Ozzie Smith's home run in Game 5 of the 1985 NLCS certainly made Cardinals fans "go crazy." It was somewhat ironic though that the man telling Cardinals fans go crazy was the ever-composed Jack Buck. Perhaps it's that contrast that has made this one of Buck's legendary calls.
"He literally disperses his atoms inside of his body"
Ray Hudson has been featured many times on this site for his announcing antics. Trying to pick just one of Hudson's soliloquies was nearly impossible. Maybe it's an inspiration derived from Breaking Bad, but we chose this chemistry-themed description of a piece of Messi brilliance.
Winner: Jack Buck 74% – 26%