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The original voice of the Kentucky Wildcats still echoes despite the years since his death

As one of the first voices of the University of Kentucky men’s basketball program, Claude Sullivan became a nationally known sportscasting pioneer.

Claude Sullivan

Claude Sullivan

In Voice of the Wildcats: Claude Sullivan and the Rise of Modern Sportscasting, Alan Sullivan, Claude Sullivan's son, along with Joe Cox, give the behind-the-scenes account of the man whose voice embodied University of Athletics from 1947 to 1967.

The 1940s witnessed an explosion in sports broadcasting across the country, and when Sullivan, a 17-year-old from Winchester, took up the microphone, he became part of a rapidly changing field. Sullivan's career developed as Kentucky began its rise to prominence and spanned the first four NCAA Basketball Championships under Coach .

He also revolutionized the coverage of athletics by introducing a coach's show with Kentucky football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant. It was not only copied by other institutions but would also become an important innovation that paved the way for the modern televised sports entertainment industry of today.

 

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