Billy Packer, an Emmy award-winning college basketball broadcaster who covered 34 Final Fours for NBC and CBS, died Thursday. He was 82.
Packer's son, Mark, told The Associated Press that his father had been hospitalized in Charlotte for the past three weeks and had several medical issues
And ultimately succumbed to kidney failure.
Packer’s broadcasting career coincided with the growth of college basketball. He worked as analyst or color commentator on every Final Four from 1975 to 2008
He received a Sports Emmy for Outstanding Sports Personality, Studio and Sports Analyst in 1993.
“He really enjoyed doing the Final Fours,” Mark Packer said. “He timed it right. Everything in life is about timing
The ability to get involved in something that, frankly, he was going to watch anyway, was a joy to him
And then college basketball just sort of took off with Magic Johnson and Larry Bird and that became,
I think, the catalyst for college basketball fans to just go crazy with March Madness.”