Legendary sportscaster Keith Jackson dies at 89

Sportscaster Keith Jackson
(Image credit: Richard Shotwell/The Associated Press)

Legendary college football broadcaster Keith Jackson died Friday evening, ESPN reported Saturday. He was 89.

Before he retired in 2006, Jackson spent five decades calling games, including the original Monday Night Football game in 1970. "For generations of fans, Keith Jackson was college football," said Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger. "When you heard his voice, you knew it was a big game. Keith was a true gentleman and memorable presence. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Turi Ann, and his family."

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Jackson's expressions — like "whoa, Nellie" and "Big Uglies," and stadium nicknames like "The Granddaddy of Them All" for the Rose Bowl — became part of fans' lexicon during his years on air, and he was the first sportscaster to be inducted into the Rose Bowl Hall of Fame in 1999.

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In addition to football, Jackson broadcast NBA games, the World Series, and the Olympics, among other sports. He is survived by his wife, three children, and three grandchildren.

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