Hall of Fame quarterback Bob Griese has decided to retire from broadcasting after 29 years, including the last 24 on ESPN and ABC.
“I’ve had a wonderful career and now it’s time to experience new things,” Griese said. “I’ve had many highlights along the way, from working the NFL’s Super Bowl and college football’s championship games to covering many of my son Brian’s games during his undefeated season in 1997. I want to thank ABC, ESPN and the fans for their support and all the men and women on our TV crews for their patience and support thru the years.”
Griese, a member of both the Pro Football and College Football Halls of Fame, joined ABC in 1987 where he provided fans with in-depth analysis and direct commentary on top Saturday afternoon games. For the past two seasons, he worked ESPN’s Saturday noon telecast with commentator Dave Pasch and analyst Chris Spielman.
While at ESPN and ABC, Griese called many top regular-season and bowl games, including the Rose Bowl Game, Fiesta Bowl, Sugar Bowl and Orange Bowl. He also called his son, Brian’s, final college game in the 1998 Rose Bowl Game. In the game, Brian, who now works as an ESPN college football analyst, led the undefeated Michigan Wolverines to a victory and a share of the national championship title. Griese started his career at NBC, where he served as the top analyst on NFL telecasts from 1982 to 1986 where he called the Super Bowl.
In a special moment for father and son, Bob and Brian worked a game together for the only time when they called Minnesota at Purdue this season on Saturday, Oct. 16.
Norby Williamson, ESPN executive vice president, production, said, “Sports fans have greatly benefited from the insights of Bob Griese. After a Hall of Fame playing career, he made the transition to become an elite broadcaster at the top of his field for three decades. We wish him continued success and enjoyment as he begins the next phase of his life.”
Keith Jackson, the legendary college football play-by-play voice for ABC who worked with Griese for 12 years, added, “Bob is a great analyst and an even better man. We liked each other, became very good friends and remain so to this day seeing each other throughout the year. I’m terribly fond of him. I like to think he learned to enjoy it and laugh a little more as time went on. We had the ability to play off each other which isn’t always the case with announcer teams. It worked for us.”
Griese was a two-time All-American at Purdue and runner-up for the 1966 Heisman Trophy. He was the top draft choice for the Miami Dolphins in 1967, and fourth pick overall.
In the 1970’s, Griese led the Miami Dolphins to nine winning seasons, three AFC Championships and two consecutive wins in Super Bowls VII and VIII. His greatest accomplishment came in 1972, when he returned from a mid-season injury to lead his team to an undefeated, 17-0 championship season.
In his 14-year professional football career spent entirely with the Dolphins (1967-1980), Griese threw for 25,592 yards, 192 touchdowns and had a career passer rating of 77.1. He was a six-time Dolphin MVP, four-time All-AFC and a two-time All-Pro. He played in two AFL All-Star games and six NFL Pro Bowls.