There’s a new voice of the Gators

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  • #17248
    Mark Wheeler
    Forum Owner

    Sean Kelley Named Next Voice of the Gators

    Kelley brings over 20 years of professional experience, including spending the last three years at ESPN as the lead play-by-play voice for college football.

    GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Sean Kelley has been hired as the Voice of the Gators, the University Athletic Association announced on Wednesday. Kelley is just the fourth person to hold the position since 1940.

    “Florida is one of the elite of the elites with regard to intercollegiate athletics, said Kelley. “That makes it not only a destination job for anyone in our business, it makes it a destination job for those who have reached certain heights in our business.

    “With the two new head coaches I’ll be working with, there’s an excitement level at Florida that is unapparelled in the country with Billy Napier and Todd Golden. And then the tradition of success at that university. It’s undeniable how attractive the Florida job is and how deeply humbled I am that I would even be considered, let alone chosen as the person to be a part of that and to follow a 33-year legend in Mick Hubert. The lineage of the ‘Voice of the Gators,’ not only is it a short list, but it’s a Hall-of-Fame list.”

    Kelley joins the Gators with over 20 years of professional experience, including spending the last three years at ESPN. He joined the network in July of 2019 as the lead play-by-play voice for college football on ESPN Radio and has gone on to provide commentary on national radio broadcasts for the NFL, NBA, MLB and college basketball.

    He recently called the Houston Astros no-hitter this season against the New York Yankees and was on the call in Fenway Park Monday for the Red Sox vs. the Rays. Kelley also called Game 7 of the NBA Eastern Conference Semifinals between the Milwaukee Bucks and Boston Celtics. In 2021 Kelley called play-by-play on national radio when Florida football faced LSU and twice in 2019 when the Gators faced Miami and LSU.

    “I am excited to have someone with Sean’s talents and experience as the new play-by-play voice of the Gators,” said Scott Stricklin, Athletics Director at University of Florida. “This position attracted a large number of highly-qualified applicants, but Sean rose above the field early on in this process.”

    Prior to his time with ESPN, Kelley was the voice of the New Orleans Pelicans from 2005-19 (previously New Orleans Hornets). He oversaw all aspects of the Pelicans Radio Network including client and affiliate relations.

    In 2012, the New Orleans Saints added him as a digital host assisting with the team’s digital media department and a television reporter on the team’s preseason television package. He also hosted The Black and Blue Report, which was an online radio show that focused on the news surrounding the Pelicans and Saints organizations with exclusive interviews with players, coaches and executives.

    A native of St. Louis, Kelley was the voice of the Tulane Green Wave from 2002-05, providing play-by-play for football, basketball and baseball games while hosting TV and radio shows. He arrived after working at KFRU in Columbia, Mo. from 1998-2002. He was the station’s sports director, anchor and host in addition to calling play-by-play for the Mizzou baseball team while hosting the pre-game, halftime and post-game show for the Missouri Tiger Radio Network for two years.

    Kelley graduated with his degree in broadcast journalism from Southern Illinois University and in addition to his broadcasting career, he served as a firefighter with St. Tammany Parish Fired District 13 from 2012-17.

    Voice of the Gators

    Name Years
    Otis Boggs 1940-82
    David Steele 1982-89
    Mick Hubert 1989-2022

    #17280
    Cam Parker
    ITG Staff

    Here’s a fun clip of Sean Kelley calling a Texas game when a streaker dressed as Santa Claus ran on the field.

    #17301
    Chris WIll
    ITG Subscriber

    For those who for some reason are already criticizing him for “lacking energy” it is important to remember that now he can have a little bias and cheer for a team after doing a majority of national broadcasts that require him to be in the middle of the road.

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