Aug. 9, 2013
ANN ARBOR, Mich. (IMG College) -- Frank Beckmann, the legendary voice of University of Michigan football and a member of the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame, has announced his retirement effective the conclusion of the 2013 football season. Beckmann began calling play-by-play for the Wolverines in 1981. He is only the second person to handle play-by-play duties for the flagship network broadcast of Michigan football in the past 65 years.
"It has been a pleasure for all of us at the IMG Audio network and our marketing staff at University of Michigan to work with Frank," said Chris Ferris, VP of Audio for IMG College, the school's multimedia rights partner. "While we will miss Frank's distinctive call, we are very grateful to have his continuing involvement in our broadcasts this season as well as in consulting the IMG operation and participating in broadcasting features for IMG in the future."
"We appreciate all that Frank has done for Michigan football for the past 33 years," said Dave Brandon, the Donald R. Shepherd Director of Athletics at U-M. "Frank has dedicated his Saturday afternoons to telling the story of Michigan football through the radio to our fans. His voice has become synonymous with some of the great calls in the history of our football program. We look forward to enjoying one more season of Frank being the voice of Michigan football before he begins his well-deserved retirement. We thank Frank for all the years of talent, travel and support of Michigan Athletics. We look forward to celebrating his contribution to our football program as the 2013 season unfolds."
Beckmann, who has hosted a daily weekday talk show on WJR-AM in Detroit since 2004, will continue in that role.
A Michigan native, Beckmann took his first radio job in 1969 at an AM station in Alpena, working as a one-man news staff. Six months later he landed at WPON-AM in Pontiac, where he did play-by-play for the Midwest Football League's Pontiac Arrows.
After stints at WKNR-AM in Dearborn, WDRQ-FM and Channel 2, Beckmann joined the WJR news staff in 1972. As news reporter he specialized in the kind of hard-hitting reporting that won him numerous awards, including the National Headliner. He also received a citation for "Best Coverage of a Single News Event" -- the Hoffa Disappearance.
Three years after joining the news team Beckmann switched to the WJR sports staff. He became sports director and lead announcer for the Detroit Lions and, in 1981, he succeeded Bob Ufer as the play-by-play announcer for U-M football. Here, too, he has won numerous awards. The Associated Press and United Press International have named him "Top Michigan Sportscaster," and the National Association of Sportscasters voted him "Michigan's Sportscaster of the Year."
About IMG College
IMG College is the nation's leading collegiate multimedia, marketing and licensing/brand management company, representing more than 200 of the nation's top collegiate properties, including the NCAA and its 89 championships, NCAA Football, leading conferences and many of the most prestigious colleges and universities in the country. Headquartered in Winston Salem, N.C., IMG College connects brands with the largest and most demographically attractive fan base in sports through partnership opportunities in multimedia rights, sponsorship sales, licensing, marketing, ticketing, seating, fundraising, premium events and hospitality, stadium and arena development, and consulting. IMG College produces nearly 31,000 hours of radio programming on the largest sports network in the country, manages nearly 5,000 hours of local television programming, is the leading publisher of college sports publications and is the largest manager of university athletic websites. IMG College is a division of IMG Worldwide, a global sports, fashion and media business. For more information, please visit www.imgcollege.com.
Contact: Andrew Giangola, IMG College, firstname.lastname@example.org