Legendary college football broadcaster Keith Jackson dies at 89

Keith Jackson, legendary college football announcer, dies at 89

He passed away Friday night, according to multiple reports.

Jackson, who retired in 2006, spent some 50 years calling the action in a folksy, down-to-earth manner that made him one of the most popular play-by-play personalities in the business. He was also the first play-by-play man on Monday Night Football.

And he was there for all the big games from decade to decade. He joined ABC in 1966 when it secured the rights to college football coverage but also covered the NFL, NBA, MLB, NASCAR and served as a host on "Wide World of Sports". Keith was a true gentleman and memorable presence.

"Can close my eyes and think of so many of his special calls", ESPN college football analyst Kirk Herbstreit, who was part of the studio cast that final game, wrote on Twitter. In the days before cable and monstrous television packages where almost every top-level college football game is televised, the ABC 3:30 p.m. ET game was appointment viewing for many college football fans as it was traditionally the weekend's marquee game. It is Jackson that is largely credited with nicknaming the Rose Bowl "The Granddaddy of Them All".

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There he covered nearly everything the sports world had to offer.

"This is the flawless time", Jackson told The New York Times in May 2006.

Jackson was born on October 18, 1928, in Georgia near the Alabama state line.

Jackson is from Roperville, Georgia and is a graduate of Washington State University. "His influence as a broadcaster of all sports is forever". He was a five-time National Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association National Sportscaster of the Year recipient.

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