Yesterday, we learned of the passing of legendary ABC Sports broadcaster Jim McKay. He has left behind a tremendous legacy from his early days with CBS Sports as the host of The Masters to his long career with ABC Sports as he spanned the globe as the host of Wide World of Sports. Today, we look back at his career thanks to video and YouTube, we have plenty of clips to watch.
First, The Archive of American Television conducted an extensive interview with Jim at his Maryland ranch and we have six clips. Unfortunately, I cannot embed them here, but I can link to them. Some of the clips are almost a half hour long, but they are quite interesting to watch. I will link to each of the segments, then I will also give you some of classic calls of which I can embed here.
Here is the first of six segments with Jim McKay from an interview conducted with Jerry Sandusky back in 1998. This goes back to his early days in Philadelphia.
Here’s the second segment as Jim talks about his days working on television in Baltimore.
This is the third segment and Jim talks about broadcasting the 1960 Olympics from Rome for CBS.
In this segment, number four of six, Jim discusses ABC’s coverage of the Olympics including the1972 Munich games.
Here’s Jim talking about his work on Wide World of Sports.
Finally, this is Jim discussing some of the people he has worked with including Walter Cronkite and Howard Cosell.
This is the classic opening of Wide World of Sports which includes clips of Russian gymnast Olga Korbut, motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel, the Little League World Series (which was a staple of Wide World) and barrel jumping (also a staple of Wide World).
Here’s the Wide World close from 1982.
This is the open from the 30th Anniversary program of Wide World in 1991.
From the same 30th Anniversary program, Jim talks with Vinko Bogataj who embodied the Agony of Defeat on Wide World.
I put this in yesterday’s obiturary, but I’ll put in here as well. In 1972, Jim called track & field for the Munich Olympics. This is his call of Dave Wottle winning the 800 meters coming from last place to win the gold medal.
Also from the 1972 Munich games, Jim called gymnastics and this is the moment when Olga Korbut became an international star. His partner was Gordon Maddux.
What made Jim’s career was his hosting of Olympic broadcasts and here is his opening from August 3, 1984 as the Games of the XXIII Olympiad were taking place in Los Angeles and also note some of the announcers working the games for ABC like Al Michaels, Jack Whitaker, Jim Lampley, Howard Cosell and Keith Jackson.
Here’s a preview Jim did for the 1988 Winter Olympics from Calgary. It would be the last games Jim would host. He had a minor role in 2002 for the Salt Lake Games on NBC, but it was very limited.
That’s a brief sampling of Jim’s past work. He will definitely be missed.