ESPN announced Wednesday that Musburger would be retiring from broadcasting at the end of the month after calling an SEC basketball game on Jan. 31. Musburger has served as the lead college football announcer for the SEC Network since the channel’s inception in 2014 after being ESPN’s top college football voice since 2006.
“What a wonderful journey I have traveled with CBS and the Disney company,” Musburger said in a statement. “A love of sports allows me to live a life of endless pleasure. And make no mistake, I will miss the arenas and stadiums dearly. Most of all, I will miss the folks I have met along the trail. But the next rodeo for me is in Las Vegas. Stop by and we’ll share a cold one and some good stories. I may even buy!”
This one hits you right in the heart. The fact we’ll never get a “You are looking live” or hear Brent say “The Granddaddy of them all” again just hurts. First Verne and now this, life just isn’t fair. Brent has left all of us with a lifetime full of memories on the call, let’s take a look at a couple just to pay our respects. (By the way, I actually think ESPN is driving Brent out of the booth. 77 years old but that man has the heart of a lion, at least 5-10 more good years in him. Just wait a couple months for Brent to speak out and tell us what really happened)
One of the most memorable broadcasting moments of the last decade. If you don’t believe in love at first sight then you did not watch the 2013 BCS National Championship game. While AJ McCarron was out there beating Notre Dame to a pulp, Mister Steal Yo Girl Musburger was busy spitting his game. One of those moments that will never get old. If Kirk Herbstreit wasn’t in that booth then Musburger might still be talking about Katherine Webb. AJ McCarron probably hasn’t had a good night of sleep since because he’s so worried Brent may kidnap his wife. The heart wants what the heart wants, go get her Brent!
Then there was the most awkward halftime interview ever conducted on live television.
You want to make magic happen? You get Musburger in the booth with B Rabbit. Slim looked like he was coked out and Musburger looked like a little kid on Christmas Eve. “You, my friend, are a legend” followed by “I’m really uncomfortable right now” is absolute gold. Part of me actually thinks that Slim was so creeped out that he took Musburger out clubbin’ after that game. By 2:00 AM these two were on top of tables singing Hailies Song. Just a home run interview all in all.
And then, most recently, Brent did an absolute 360 on everybody.
Just one of the the most bizarre moments ever. “We’ve talked to the coaches, they all swear that the young man is doing fine. Folks, he is just one of the best, and let’s hope, given a second chance by Bob Stoops and Oklahoma, let’s hope that this young man makes the most of his chance and goes on to have a career in the National Football League.” Can’t even wrap my head around it. Something like three days after the world saw Joe Mixon beat the living hell out of some girl, Musburger grabs his sword and starts defending the wall. People like myself absolutely disgusted at the NCAA, the Sooners fake punching Mixon after he scored, and the OU president hugging him on the sidelines just wasn’t enough, Brent had to come in for the kill shot. Brent’s last ever college football game couldn’t have gone worse, but I’m not going to let Musburger get remembered for this.
Remember our friend Brent for that moment when “You are looking live” was the most refreshing four words of your day. Remember him for the guy that always let you know the spread in blowout wins, just to keep you entertained. Remember him for that voice of his that you wished could narrate your own life on a daily basis. And remember him for the good times, not the bad. He was the hero we needed, but not the one we deserved. Cheers to you, Brent Musburger. Stay gold, Ponyboy. Stay gold.