There are certain people’s voices in the world who become so synonymous with sports commentary that when they finally retire from the broadcast booth it is hard to imagine anyone ever filling their shoes.
To me John Madden is the voice of football, the crazy man who wore far far too much makeup but was the personification of the NFL.
A Superbowl winning head coach with the Oakland Raiders, Madden could make wild, wacky or weird comments, but he had the NFL wins to back it up, and anyone who has seen his heartfelt interview in the Superbowl XI episode of ‘America’s Game’ knows that winning a big one meant the absolute world to him.
I like millions of other NFL and computer games fans grew up playing the John Madden franchise of computer games, in my case on the Sega Mega-Drive, Sony PlayStation, Sony Playstation2, Nintendo Wii and Sony PSP.
I almost lost my future wife to be at university due to my addiction to Madden ’95, as my friend Pin (named after a very obscure 1980s Horror film of the same name about a doctor who talked to a dummy) and I would spend hours, that turned into days battling our mass of coloured pixels against each other. This was well before flat screen HDTV.
Hearing Madden make little comments as I try to guide the Redskins to a 16-0 undefeated season is a part of my childhood and adulthood, and I have still not shaken the habit as I purchased Madden 09 – with Brett Favre as a Packer on the cover.
NFL commentary will sorely miss John Madden and his ‘doinking’ as well as his turkducken – the most legendary bird based meat product ever discussed on Thanksgiving day.
John Madden you are a living legend – and from an NFL fan in England I will certainly shed a tear knowing that there is no more Maddenisms coming in the 2009 NFL season.