Brent Musburger retiring from broadcasting at end of January

Brent Musburger started calling the NFL for CBS in 1973. (ESPN)
Brent Musburger started calling the NFL for CBS in 1973. (ESPN)

Iconic college football announcer Brent Musburger’s final game was the Sugar Bowl.

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!”

It’s entirely fitting that Musburger — a man who always made viewers aware of what the spread and over/under was for the game he was calling — made a mention of Las Vegas in the statement announcing his retirement. Per the AP, Musburger plans to “help his family start a sports handicapping business.”

Musburger, 77, became known to national sports viewers in 1973 when he was a part of CBS’ coverage of the NFL. He’s broadcast nearly every major American sport, including the Little League World Series, the Indianapolis 500, World Cup and the Super Bowl. It’s not a stretch to say Musburger has done it all in the sports world as he became one of the most ubiquitous faces and voices of sports television.

His “You are looking live” introduction to broadcasts is one of the most signature lines in American sports broadcasting. And during the 2013 BCS Championship Game, Musburger made Katherine McCarron, then the girlfriend of Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron, famous with his description of her when cameras panned to her during the middle of the Tide’s blowout win.

His last college football broadcast was a memorable one, though not for warm and fuzzy reasons. Musburger poorly opined about Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon during the game, which was Mixon’s first game since the release of a surveillance tape showing him punching a woman in the face in 2014.

After criticism of Musburger online was swift (and just), Musburger defended his comments later in the game. An ESPN statement the next day said Musburger’s comments “should have also included the impact on the young woman” and the network told the AP that the controversy has nothing to do with his decision to retire.

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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