Former ESPN Sportscaster Ron Franklin gone at age 79:Franklin was considered by many to be one of the best all-time play-by-play men

from Larry Brown and Larry Brown Sports:
Longtime ESPN broadcaster Ron Franklin has died.

Franklin died on Tuesday, according to multiple reports on social media. He was 79.

Franklin worked at ESPN calling primarily college basketball and college football games from 1987-2011. He was the play-by-play voice of the Texas Longhorns from 1983-1988 and Houston Oilers from 1977-1982. Franklin called Big 12 games for several years alongside Fran Fraschilla, who reacted to the news of Franklin’s death on Twitter.

AUSTIN, Texas — Ron Franklin, a longtime Houston sportscaster who went on to ESPN and called games for the Texas Longhorns, has died, according to family members.

News of Franklin’s passing was shared Tuesday by his friends, including KHOU sports anchor Matt Musil.

Former KVUE-TV sportscaster Mike Barnes remembers Franklin as a talented announcer during his time covering the Texas Longhorns.

“Ron Franklin let me do a story on him a couple of times, including a behind the scenes look in 1992, when he announced a couple of Longhorn games,” Barnes wrote. “He made it look so easy.”

Franklin was born Feb. 2, 1942, and spent his childhood in Hazelhurst, Mississippi. A compromise with his mother allowed him to play sports as along as he took voice lessons, according to a 2010 story in Mississippi Sports Magazine.

A head injury ended his high school football playing career, but he found work as a radio disc jockey and later attended the University of Mississippi.

He added television broadcasts to his resume with stops in New Mexico and Tulsa, Oklahoma before he arrived in Houston in 1971.

He joined the Houston Oilers broadcast team as the play-by-play commentator the same year he joined KHOU-TV, where he worked until 1980 before a seven-year-stint at crosstown rival KPRC.

Franklin joined ESPN in 1987 and stayed for more than two decades as a commentator and anchor for college football and basketball coverage.

His time with the network ended in early 2011 after an off-air verbal incident with a colleague, sideline reporter Jeannine Edwards. Franklin later sued ESPN for wrongful termination. The suit was settled out of court in 2012, according to The Oklahoman.

Franklin lived in Austin and remained a favorite personality among Texas Longhorn fans. He’s survived by his wife, Bonnie, and one child.

Ron Franklin was 79.