Legendary Vols announcer John Ward dies at 88.

KNOXVILLE (WDEF) – We should all have a catch phrase that they can put on our tombstones.

John Ward has one.

“It’s football time in Tennessee.”

Generations of Vols fans grew up with that phrase as Ward gave them the play-by-play for Tennessee football over more than 30 years.

The legendary broadcaster died Wednesday night at the age of 88.

“When it came to UT sports, listening to John Ward was almost as good as watching the game. In fact, many Vol fans at many games brought their radios to make sure they could do both. John was a generous, courteous, enthusiastic ambassador for the University of Tennessee. He brought joy into our lives, and we will miss him.” Sen. & former UT President Lamar Alexander.

Ward took the UT play by play job in 1968 and kept it through the 1998 season, the year they won a national championship.

But he began his broadcasting career announcing UT basketball games back in 1958.

Ward actually graduated from Tennessee with a law degree.

He won the Tennessee Sportscaster of the Year Award 27 times.

And he was named the Best College Announcer in the Country in 1976.

Categories: Featured, Regional News, Sports, Sports – UT Vols

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