STARKVILLE, Miss.--The public ceremony officially dedicating a portion of U.S. Highway 82 in honor of legendary Mississippi State sports announcer Jack Cristil takes place Monday [June 20] on the university campus.
To be held in the Colvard Student Union's Foster Ballroom, the 2 p.m. program will pay further tribute to the iconic sportscaster.
A replica of the highway sign to be placed on a segment of U.S. Highway 82 will be unveiled. Also known as the 82 Bypass, the portion within the Starkville corporate limits is being designated the "Jack Cristil Highway."
The program will include remarks by MSU President Mark E. Keenum; Mike Tagert, Northern District transportation commissioner; Starkville Mayor Parker Wiseman; and Jim Ellis, the university's senior sports broadcaster and longtime Cristil associate. A brief reception follows.
A Tupelo resident, Cristil served as the "voice of the Bulldogs" from 1953-2011, calling play-by-play action for more than 1,500 college football and basketball games during his 58-year career. During that time, he earned numerous honors, including the Lindsey Nelson Award given annually to the nation's premier sports broadcaster.
His other honors include the prestigious College Football Foundation Chris Schenkel Award and the Ronald Reagan Lifetime Achievement Award of the National Association of Sportscasters and Sportswriters. He was named Mississippi Sportscaster of the Year a record 21 times and became the first non-coach/non-athlete inducted into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame.