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Lundquist attended Augustana Seminary in Rock Island, Illinois in 1962. His father was a Lutheran pastor and President of the Nebraska Synod of the Augustana Lutheran Church. Lundquist played basketball and baseball and was a disc jockey at WOC, Davenport, Iowa. His 'Golden Voice' was the highlight of the seminary class on preaching.
He began his broadcasting career as sports anchor for WFAA in Dallas and in Austin for KTBC, as well as being the radio voice of the Dallas Cowboys. Lundquist joined the Cowboys Radio Network in 1967 and remained with the team until the 1984 season. He was paired with future (and now current) play-by-play man Brad Sham starting with the 1977 season, the year the Cowboys went 12-2 and captured their second NFL title in Super Bowl XII. He was sportscaster at WFAA during their 6pm news, while his eventual successor Dale Hansen did the 10pm news.
Before becoming a nationwide sports commentator, from 1970 to 1974, Lundquist was commentator for the sports show, Bowling for Dollars, in Dallas, Texas. It aired weekday evenings on the ABC station, WFAA-TV, from 6:30 to 7:00, in north central Texas. During these four seasons, Lundquist started interviewing Cowboys players and their first head coach, Tom Landry, at their sidelines, during halftimes, practices, pre-season and pre-game warm-ups, in Dallas.
Nationally, Lundquist worked for ABC Sports from 1974 to 1981, CBS from 1982 to 1995, and TNT cable from 1995 to 1997 before returning to CBS in 1998. Lundquist's patented belly laugh and his contagious enthusiasm for the events he covers have made him one of the more prominent and recognizable on-air talents in network TV.
Lundquist filled in for Ernie Johnson Jr. as host of TNT's coverage of the PGA Championship twice, in 2006 as Johnson was battling cancer, and in 2011 when Johnson left after the second round following the death of his father on that Friday night.
After his return to CBS, Lundquist served as the long-time lead play-by-play announcer for CBS Sports' coverage of college football on the SEC on CBS from 2000-2016.
Lundquist retired from broadcasting college football games after calling the Army-Navy Game on December 10, 2016. He planned to contribute to other CBS Sports programs, including its college basketball and golf coverage, for the foreseeable future.
In March 2018, Lundquist announced he would not work the 2018 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament, as he was still recovering from back surgery he had in November 2017, and would retire from calling college basketball.
A famous pet phrase Lundquist used on occasion is "How do you DO!"; on a huge offensive or defensive play, a phrase he took from USC football broadcaster Pete Arbogast (who in turn took the phrase from venerable broadcaster Vin Scully).
There's the pass to Laettner...puts it up...YES!!!
February 25, 1994: While calling figure skating at the Winter Olympics, Lundquist called one of the most watched sports events in history. The ladies free skate portion of the 1994 Olympics drew Super Bowl type television ratings because of the hyped Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan debacle. The drama unfolded that evening as Tonya Harding begin her free skate, then quit 45 seconds into her program, and went crying to the judges table of a broken skate lace. She was granted permission to fix her skate and start her free skate later in the evening. During the ordeal, he said:
November 11, 2006: While calling a college football game on CBS between the #6-ranked Florida Gators and the unranked South Carolina Gamecocks, Florida defensive end Jarvis Moss blocked a game-winning 48-yard field goal attempt by South Carolina kicker Ryan Succop. The Gators would go on to win the national championship:
October 24, 2009: While calling a college football rivalry game on CBS between the #1-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide and the unranked Tennessee Volunteers, Alabama defensive tackle Terrence Cody blocked a game-winning 44-yard field goal attempt by Tennessee kicker Daniel Lincoln to help Alabama win the national championship:
November 10, 2012: While calling the college football game on CBS between the #1-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide and the #15-ranked Texas A&M Aggies, A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel threw a touchdown pass to receiver Ryan Swope after nearly getting sacked and fumbling the football, all but cementing Manziel's Heisman Trophy that year.
Snap from Patrick Lewis ... 4-man Alabama rush ... got him ... no, they didn't. Oh, my GRACIOUS! HOW ABOUT THAT!?
On the way ... No, returned by Chris Davis. Davis goes left. Davis gets a block. Davis has another block! Chris Davis! No flags! Touchdown, Auburn! An answered prayer!
October 1, 2016: While calling a college football rivalry game on CBS between #11-ranked Tennessee and #25-ranked Georgia at Sanford Stadium, Tennessee quarterback Joshua Dobbs completed a Hail Mary pass to wide receiver Jauan Jennings with no time remaining in regulation play to give Tennessee a 34-31 victory, only 10 clock seconds after Georgia had scored a 47-yard touchdown to secure the lead and presumably the win:
Dobbs heaves it. They're bunched up in the end zone. It's tipped up. It's caught! It is caught! Jauan Jennings! Jauan Jennings!
April 14, 2019: While calling the 16th hole at the 2019 Masters Tournament, where Tiger Woods hit a remarkable tee shot and made a birdie to increase his lead in the final round. Woods would go on to win the tournament (his first win at Augusta in 14 years) capping an amazing comeback to the top of the golfing world:
May 23, 2021: While calling the 5th hole in the final round of the 2021 PGA Championship, where Phil Mickelson electrified the crowd by holing a bunker shot for birdie on his way to becoming the oldest major champion in golf history: