Verne Lundquist, a sports media veteran who has broadcast 20 different sports in his lengthy career with networks such as TNT, CBS Sports and ABC Sports, has been honored with the 2016 Ronald Reagan Media Award from the United States Sports Academy.
The award was presented to Lundquist by Dr. T.J. Rosandich, Academy President and CEO, at the University of Georgia vs. University of Florida football game in Jacksonville, Fla. The presentation was aired nationally as a part of the game broadcast.
In August, Lundquist began his 54th year in broadcasting. Currently, he teams with Gary Danielson and Allie LaForce to call the Southeastern Conference “Game of the Week” on CBS during college football season. He retired following the conclusion of the college football regular season.
The Ronald Reagan Media Award, named in honor of the 40th President of the United States, is presented annually to an individual for outstanding contributions to sport through broadcasting, print, photography, or acting. The individual should exhibit imagination, excitement, and genius in kindling a keen public interest and appreciation for the role of sport in modern society.
Lundquist served CBS Sports as an NFL and college football play-by-play announcer since 1998, after having previously worked there from 1982-96. Since 2000 Lundquist had been the lead play-by-play announcer with Danielson for CBS Sports’ coverage of college football. In addition, Lundquist provided play-by-play for CBS Sports’ coverage of National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) basketball, including the annual NCAA Division 1 Men’s Basketball Championship tournament.
Lundquist was also part of the CBS Sports Masters Golf Tournament broadcast team and has called the action at Augusta National Golf Club almost every year since 1983 except one, in addition to other Professional Golfers’ Association of America (PGA) events.
Throughout his lengthy career, Lundquist has received a host of national awards and recognition for his service. He was inducted into the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association Hall of Fame in 2007. In May 2016, Lundquist won the Sports Emmy Award for Lifetime Achievement.
Known in Texas as the long-time radio voice of the Dallas Cowboys from 1972-84, Lundquist was sports director at WFAA-TV in Dallas for 16 years. In 2003, Lundquist was inducted into the Texas Radio Hall of Fame. He won seven consecutive Texas Sportscaster of the Year Awards from 1977-83 and in 2005 became the first member of the media to be inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame.
Lundquist was also named the 2005 Legend of the Sun Bowl by the Sun Bowl Association. In 2014 Lundquist received the Vin Scully Lifetime Achievement Award in Sports Broadcasting from Fordham University’s WFUV Radio. In 2015 he and Danielson were honored with the Maxwell Football Club’s Excellence in Broadcasting award.
During his career, Lundquist also won the 2015 Charles Ringler Founders’ Award from the Davey O’Brien Football Foundation, the 2015 Jake Wade Memorial Award from the College Sports Information Directors Association, the 2014 Distinguished American from the Walter Camp Football Foundation in New Haven, Conn., and he was the 2011 co-winner of the award for Outstanding Contribution to Amateur Football by the National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame.
Lundquist worked at ABC Sports from 1974-81 and spent three years as play-by-play announcer for TNT’s NFL, NBA, golf and figure skating coverage from 1995-97.
Lundquist began his career at KTBC-TV in Austin, Texas. His career also includes roles as himself in three movies including the Adam Sandler comedy Happy Gilmore.
He was born July 17, 1940, in Duluth, Minn., and grew up in Everett, Wash. and Austin, Texas.
Lundquist earned a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Texas Lutheran University in 1962 and received the school’s Distinguished Alumnus Award. He also is a member of Texas Lutheran’s Board of Regents.
The Ronald Reagan Media Award is part of the United States Sports Academy’s Awards of Sport, which each year serve as “A Tribute to the Artist and the Athlete.” The Academy presents the awards to pay tribute to those who have made significant contributions to sport, in categories as diverse as the artist and the athlete in several different arenas of sport. The awards honor exemplary achievement in coaching, all-around athletic performance, courage, humanitarian activity, fitness, and media, among others. The Academy’s American Sport Art Museum and Archives (ASAMA) annually recognizes these men and women through its Sport Artist of the Year, Honorary Doctorates, Distinguished Service Awards, Medallion Series, Outstanding Athletes, and Alumni of the Year awards.
Based in Daphne, Ala., the United States Sports Academy is an independent, non-profit, accredited, special mission sports university created to serve the nation and world with programs in instruction, research, and service. The role of the Academy is to prepare men and women for careers in the profession of sports. For more information about the Academy, call (251) 626-3303 or visit www.ussa.edu.
Founded in 1984, ASAMA is dedicated to the preservation of sports art, history, and literature. The ASAMA collection is composed of nearly 2,000 works of sport art across a variety of media, including paintings, sculptures, assemblages, prints and photographs. The museum is open free to the public from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays. For more information, go to www.asama.org.
By Eric Mann
Eric Mann is the communications assistant at the United States Sports Academy. Reach him at email@example.com.