Legendary broadcaster Mike Patrick made his final appearance on ESPN last night, joining Dan Shulman, Jay Bilas and Maria Taylor for a segment during the Duke-Louisville broadcast.
During the postgame press conference Coach K paid homage to Patrick who was standing in the room. Krzyzewski thanked the broadcaster for his contributions to college sports and stated he never turned off the sound when showing his team tape of a game called by Patrick.
“It’s wonderful to reflect on how I’ve done exactly what I wanted to do with my life,” Patrick told ESPN Front Row. “At the same time, I’ve had the great pleasure of working with some of the very best people I’ve ever known, both on the air and behind the scenes. While I’m not sure exactly what’s next for me, I’m looking forward to continuing my journey with new life experiences.”
Patrick’s final call for ESPN was the 2017 Autozone Liberty Bowl on December 30th, between Iowa State and Memphis. He joined ESPN three years after its launch. During his 36 year tenure with the network, Patrick was a versatile broadcaster providing play-by-play for the NFL, college football, college basketball and others.
From 1986-2005 Patrick was the voice of Sunday Night Football on ESPN. Patrick was also a staple in college football, as part of ESPN’s Thursday Night Football and Saturday Night Football broadcasts.
From 1996-2009 Patrick provided play-by-play for Women’s Final Four games on ESPN. His men’s college basketball coverage for the network began in 1982 and continued to see Patrick call more than 30 ACC Men’s Basketball Championships.
“No play-by-play commentator in ESPN history has accomplished more than Mike Patrick,” said Lee Fitting, ESPN VP of Production. “He is not only a gifted professional who skillfully captures the moments and makes others around him better; he brings a genuine sports fan’s excitement to the telecasts. It was a truly incredible run.”
It’s not unreasonable to think we could hear Patrick resurface on another network or platform. At the age of 73, there was no mention of retirement for Patrick in the ESPN Front Row story, only that the announcer’s ESPN tenure is coming to an end.
Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.