Legendary University of Idaho Broadcaster Dies

Thursday, July 26 2012


MOSCOW, Idaho – The University of Idaho community is deeply saddened by the loss of legendary broadcaster Bob Curtis, who served as the voice of the Vandals. He was 87.

“Today the University of Idaho suffered a great loss with the death of Bob Curtis,” said University of Idaho President M. Duane Nellis. “Bob was the voice of the Vandals for more than 50 years. He brought the Vandal spirit to more than 500 football games and hundreds of basketball games. Bob is a Vandal icon that will be missed dearly. Our hearts go out to the Curtis family.”

As a senior attending Washington State University, Curtis started calling games for Idaho, Montana and Washington. In 1958, the University of Idaho hired Curtis as its play-by-play announcer for football and basketball. He remained in the position until his retirement in 2004.

Curtis had the honor of calling the 1998 season finale when the Vandals beat Boise State on a risky two-point play in the last seconds of the game. The win would send Idaho to the Humanitarian Bowl.

Throughout a 50-year span, Curtis called 540 consecutive football games, including one season while recovering from hip surgery he had during a bye week. The next game he was back at the microphone. Along with football, he also called hundreds of basketball games.

During his career, Curtis was chosen 33 times as the Idaho Sportscaster of the Year by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. In 2008, he received the 2008 National Football Foundation Chris Schenkel Award. He also served as the Northwest representative for the Heisman Trophy.

Curtis was inducted into the Vandal Athletics Hall of Fame, the North Idaho Hall of Fame and the Inland Empire Hall of Fame. Of the many athletes he watched during his years in the press box and courtside, 41 athletes became members of the Vandal Athletics Hall of Fame.

Curtis died Wednesday night at his home in Colfax, Wash. A service will be held on Friday, Aug. 3 at 10 a.m. at the Baptist Church, 200 N. Mill St., in Colfax, Wash.
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About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho inspires students to succeed and become leaders. Its land-grant mission furthers innovative scholarly and creative research to grow Idaho's economy and serve a statewide community. From its main campus in Moscow, Idaho, to 70 research and academic locations statewide, U-Idaho emphasizes real-world application as part of its student experience. U-Idaho combines the strength of a large university with the intimacy of small learning communities. It is home to the Vandals, and competes in the Western Athletic Conference. Through the university’s $225 million Inspiring Futures capital campaign, private giving will enhance student learning, faculty research and innovation, and a spirit of enterprise. Learn more: www.uidaho.edu.