Monday, October 20, 2014

Pat Summerall and Tom Brookshier calling boxing in 1976

Pat Summerall and Tom Brookshier, best known for their time in the NFL TV booth, also called some boxing matches for CBS. The most prominent of these was a heavyweight title fight between Muhammad Ali and Jean Pierre Coopman which CBS aired live in prime time on Friday 2/20/1976.

The match was very one-sided but Pat and Tom provided entertaining commentary with Brookshier often dominating the microphone. It is interesting to hear them team up in a non-football environment. Their voices always sound great together. I like how at the 5:48 mark, Brookshier refers to the trunks of Coopman as "trousers" with Summerall remarking that they almost come down to his knees. This exchange is rather humorous in retrospect considering the typical length of "shorts" today.

CBS used minimal graphics - primarily just a 30-second countdown clock at the end of each round. Although they do not appear on this video clip, Brent Musburger and Phyllis George co-hosted the telecast that night. At the 7:07 mark, you can see legendary boxing announcer Don Dunphy who supplied some commentary between rounds.

A month earlier, CBS had assigned Summerall and Brookshier to announce a Ken Norton bout against Pedro Lovell, a mere eight days before they called Super Bowl 10. CBS later paired Brookshier with analyst Jerry Quarry on a series of boxing matches including a George Foreman win over John "Dino" Denis on a Friday night in October 1976.


  1. Many years later, when Fox carried a comeback bout with Mike Tyson (I think it was the one where Petern McNeely's trainer threw in the towel at the end of the first round), didn't Pat Summerall call it with George Foreman as analyst??