Phoenix Suns radio announcer Al McCoy introduced as Fiesta Bowl Parade's Grand Marshal
Al McCoy, legendary "Voice of the Suns," is now the leading face of the 2022 Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade.
McCoy, who's entering his 51st season calling Suns games, was introduced on Tuesday as the parade's grand marshal for its Legends Made Here theme during a press conference at the Fiesta Bowl Museum in Scottsdale.
He's the third person tied to the Phoenix Suns organization to be named grand marshal, along with former team owner Jerry Colangelo and Hall of Famer Charles Barkley.
McCoy is added to a long list of other Arizona sports greats who were grand marshals, including Phoenix Mercury's Diana Taurasi, MLB Hall of Famer Randy Johnson, and Olympic gold medal-winning gymnast Kerri Strug.
"I've been involved with the Fiesta Bowl since Day One," McCoy said.
"I have followed the great success of this bowl game, and to get the invitation to be the grand marshal of the parade was a surprise, but something that was really meaningful to me. I'm excited about it and I can hardly wait."
The Fiesta Bowl, which began in 1971, will host one of the College Football Playoff semifinal games this season, Dec. 31 at State Farm Stadium. The parade will occur on Dec. 17 on a two-mile route through Central Phoenix.
"By us having someone like Al McCoy titled grand marshal just draws more people out. And obviously everyone in Arizona knows Al McCoy," Fiesta Bowl Chairman of the Board Randal Norton said.
"We want more people to be involved in the parade, line the parade route, more participants in the parade, and more bands and entertainment in the parade. It really helps to just elevate from a branding standpoint for the parade."
Norton added that for the first time ever the parade was moved up several weeks instead of a few days before the game.
The Fiesta Bowl board decided to change its parade date to not conflict with its Guaranteed Rate Bowl's Big 12 vs. Big Ten conference matchup on Dec. 27 at Chase Field in Phoenix. Also, the board wants to draw more parade participants before they might leave the Valley during busy holiday travel period.
McCoy explained his "Day One" comment about his personal history with the Fiesta Bowl by helping launch the game shortly after he arrived from his native Iowa to do radio broadcasts of Suns games.
“A lot of people aren’t aware of this fact, but my involvement with the Fiesta Bowl really started a long time ago," McCoy said. "I was on the original committee that prepared to send to the NCAA the application for a bowl game in Phoenix."
The Fiesta Bowl was originally played at Arizona State's Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe.
McCoy also told backstories of his longtime connection to Rock and Roll Hall of Fame-inducted shock rock pioneer and Phoenix resident Alice Cooper, who was last year's grand marshal.
Legendary “Voice of the Suns” radio announcer Al McCoy was introduced as the 2022 Fiesta Bowl Parade’s Grand Marshal on Tuesday.
McCoy spoke about his long history with rock music legend and Phoenix resident Alice Cooper, who’s a former Grand Marshal. pic.twitter.com/xqtncumvwf
— DANA (@iam_DanaScott) September 13, 2022
McCoy becoming a grand marshal "maybe long overdue" his stature as an "Arizona treasure," Norton said.
But from the Suns' success reaching the 2021 finals and their franchise-best 64 regular season games the following year certainly helps him become more accessible for major local sports events such as the Fiesta Bowl besides covering the team he's been synonymous with for half a century.
"Obviously, every loves a winner, and the last couple of years the Suns have been back on the winning track," McCoy said.
"Last year, the best winning record in the NBA, and obviously as the Suns win, everyone associated with the Suns attract a little bit more attention."
Read more: Suns owner Robert Sarver suspended, fined $10M after investigation
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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Fiesta Bowl Parade names Suns announcer Al McCoy its grand marshal