Joe McConnell

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Joseph Fredrick McConnell (March 10, 1939 – April 8, 2018) was an American sports announcer.

Early life and career[edit]

McConnell was born in Rochester, Indiana and grew up in Goodland, Indiana. He was a 1962 graduate of Franklin College, and his broadcasting career began in 1962 at Purdue's campus radio station, WBAA. McConnell served as assistant sports information director at Purdue from 1965 to 1967.

Broadcasting experience[edit]

McConnell's experience includes 23 seasons in the National Football League as the voice of the Denver Broncos (1969), Minnesota Vikings (1971–76 and 1985–87), Chicago Bears[1] (1977–84), Indianapolis Colts (1992-94) and Tennessee Oilers (1997–98); seven seasons in the National Basketball Association as the voice of the Phoenix Suns (1970–72) and Indiana Pacers[1] (1972–77); and seven seasons in Major League Baseball as the voice of the Minnesota Twins (1978–79) and Chicago White Sox (1980-84).[2] McConnell also spent five seasons (1991–95) as lead voice for the NBA Radio Network. He has broadcast three Super Bowls, the National Basketball Association and American Basketball Association championships, the NBA All-Star Game and the American League Championship Series. Additionally, McConnell has broadcast Northwestern football (1988) and Indiana State (1978–79), DePaul (1984–88), Illinois (1987–88), Notre Dame (1987–88) and Northwestern men's basketball (1989–94).

Joe McConnell had most recently served for 15 seasons as play-by-play announcer for Purdue football, from 1995-2009.

Awards and honors[edit]

He was honored with the AP/UPI Play-by-Play Sportscaster of the Year Award five times and was the Indiana Sportscaster of the Year in 2000 and the Illinois Sportscaster of the Year in 1981.

In 2006, he received a nomination for the National Football Foundation's Chris Schenkel Award, presented to a college football broadcaster.[3] Upon his retirement, at halftime of his final broadcast of the game between Purdue and Indiana University on November 21, 2009, he was awarded the Sagamore of the Wabash, the highest award that the Indiana governor can bestow, award by Governor Mitch Daniels.


McConnell died on April 8, 2018 in Indianapolis, Indiana at age 79.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Bears' Announcer". Times Daily. United Press International. 1977-04-19. Retrieved 2010-09-26.
  2. ^ "White Sox fire play-by-play announcer Joe McConnell". St. Petersburg Times. 1984-10-17. Retrieved 2010-09-26.
  3. ^ "Broadcast News". Purdue University. 2006-09-18. Retrieved 2010-09-26.
  4. ^ "Former White Sox broadcaster McConnell dies". MLB. 2018-04-08. Retrieved 2018-04-08.
Preceded by
Fred Manfra
National radio play-by-play announcer, NBA Finals
Succeeded by
Brent Musburger