ESPN has earned plaudits for their international soccer coverage over the past six years.  The network has committed to bringing in the best announcers from all across the world to cover the beautiful game.

It wasn’t always that way.

12 years ago in South Korea the one and only Crazy Jack Edwards, now the voice of the Boston Bruins, was the lead announcer for the tournament.  At the time, Edwards was an ESPN employee and taken from the SportsCenter studio to the World Cup broadcast booth.  Although Edwards didn’t have the experience of a Martin Tyler or an Ian Darke, he did bring the beginnings of the completely unhinged personality that we all know and love.  Although it’s fun to also look back at Edwards reciting patriotic hymns, it’s amazing to see how ESPN’s soccer coverage has evolved over the last 12 years with the 2014 World Cup kicking off today.

Let’s relive the highlights of the USA’s historic upset of Portugal in the 2002 World Cup group stage…

If Ian Darke starts rattling off the lyrics to America the Beautiful during this tournament, my head might explode for a number of reasons.