It wasn’t unexpected, but it was nevertheless momentous: Georgia’s official announcement that Scott Howard succeeds Larry Munson as the voice of the Bulldogs.
Maybe it seemed that already had happened, what with Howard having taken over play-by-play on road football games when Munson stopped traveling in 2007 and on home games, too, after Munson’s retirement early last season. But Georgia had not declared Howard to be Munson’s successor on a permanent basis until late Friday.
“If I think back to the time I was sitting in the stands [as a UGA student], listening to Larry on my transistor radio, jamming my ear piece into my ear trying to hear the best I could,” Howard told me Friday evening, “it has been an interesting 20-something years in radio to get to this point.”
For the first time in 44 years, the Bulldogs will enter a football season with someone other than Larry Munson as their first-string play-by-play radio announcer.
There’ll never be another Munson, of course, but Howard has the talent and the experience and the perspective and the passion to put his own superb mark on the job.
Following a legend is a daunting assignment, as Howard and everyone else knows. But Howard’s work for 15 seasons as Munson’s color analyst and his fill-in play-by-play work the past two seasons made him about as clear-cut a choice as there could be for this job.
“Sometimes you don’t need to look far,” Georgia athletics director Damon Evans said. “Sometimes you just need to look right in front of you. And there we had our answer.”
He was referring to both Howard and Eric Zeier, the former QB who served as color analyst when Howard slid over to the play-by-play chair the past two seasons. Zeier now gets the analyst role on a permanent basis.
Howard and Zeier first worked together on Sept. 22, 2007, when Georgia played at Alabama, the first trip Munson missed. ”We were both sky-high [and] had a lot of nerves, a lot of anticipation, toward doing that game,” Howard recalled. “It has been a good solid progression since that time.
“Eric has been tremendous. I really enjoy working with him. I have learned a lot of football from him in a short period of time.”
So what say you about the Howard-Zeier team?