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Glen Waddle: The Voice Behind “First Down! Ole Miss!”

“First Down! Ole Miss!”

That’s what Glen Waddle says is his most memorable experience as Ole Miss’ Vaught-Hemingway Stadium/Hollingsworth Field Public Address announcer.

When the football team makes a first down, Waddle energetically announces “First Down” and fans respond by chanting “Ole Miss.” The emphasis on “Oleeeeeeeee.”

“It took about five years for it to catch on,” Waddle said.

Waddle credits former NFL official Mason L. “Red” Cashion for the popular moniker. During his years of officiating, Cashion would enthusiastically drawl “First dowwwwwn” when a team advanced the ball ten yards.

Waddles notes that former Chancellor Robert Khayat credited him with doing something

Glen Waddle
Glen Waddle – Ole Miss’ Vaught-Hemingway Stadium/Hollingsworth Field Public Address announcer. (Photo courtesy Glen Waddle)

that hadn’t been done in 15 years at The University of Mississippi.

“Chancellor Khayat told me, ‘You’ve started a new tradition.’”

Waddle has served as the Rebels PA announcer since 1997. He says he’s attended 480 straight games since 1975 as either a fan or the PA announcer.

He’s no stranger to the microphone as Waddle has done PA announcing for 30 years at the high school, junior college, NAIA and NCAA ranks in addition to announcing baseball and hockey at the professional level.

The National Association of Sports Public Address Announcers (NASPAA) named Waddle as its 2010-2011 NCAA P.A. Announcer of the Year.

Marc Palmer serves as Waddle’s spotter. Palmer drives from Baton Rouge for each home game.

Waddle lives in Jackson and works for the Mississippi Bar Association as the Director, Consumer Assistance Program. While he enjoys what he does no matter what the game, Waddle says there’s added excitement when a rival comes to town.

“Any time you win a big game like beating Alabama, LSU or Mississippi State, its always fun,” Waddle said.

Waddle says he’s seen a lot during all his years of announcing but, “there’s always something you haven’t seen before.”

By Russ Jones HottyToddy.com Editor-In-Chief. He can be reached at russ.jones@hottytoddy.com

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