BUFFS

Larry Zimmer, longtime voice of Broncos and Buffs, passes away

Jan 21, 2024, 2:47 PM

For multiple generations of Colorado sports fans, Larry Zimmer provided the voice of their teams.

The legendary broadcaster died Saturday in Lakewood, aged 88. And for many fans of the Denver Broncos and Colorado Buffaloes, the memories regarding their teams involve Zimmer’s voice narrating a massive moment.

From the “Orange Crush” ride to the 1977 AFC championship to “The Drive,” “The Drive II” and CU’s 1990 national-championship season in football, Zimmer helped provide the soundtrack and the context for a bushel of moments held dear in these parts.

A product of the University of Missouri, Larry Zimmer came to Colorado from Michigan in 1971 to work in television and radio, for KOA-Ch. 4 (now KCNC) and KOA-AM 850.

Zimmer immediately took on the triple duty of handling radio play-by-play chores for CU football and men’s basketball while working as the color analyst alongside Bob Martin for Broncos radio.

Larry Zimmer remained in the analyst role for the Broncos until Super Bowl XXIV, when he stepped into the play-by-play role while Martin was gravely ill with cancer. After Martin’s death, Zimmer he slid into the play-by-play chair for seven seasons, working alongside Dave Logan, whose games he called at CU in the 1970s.

With the exception of a three-year period (1982-84), Zimmer would handle play-by-play as the “Voice of the Buffaloes” until 2004. He then shifted to a color analyst role alongside Mark Johnson for 12 seasons, finally stepping away after the 2015 campaign, his 42nd in the CU booth.

Zimmer is survived by his wife, Brigitte, two children and a granddaughter.

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