Bob Harris, former radio play-by-play voice of Duke athletics, dies at 81

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — Retired Duke sports radio play-by-play announcer Bob Harris died Wednesday.

He was 81.

Former radio analyst Wes Chesson announced Harris’ death in an update on a GoFundMe page that had been created to raise money for Harris’ care. He had been previously diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and been in hospice care, and the site had raised more than $101,000 from more than 500 donations since its launch in early 2023.

Chesson posted that Harris passed away with his wife Phyllis “at his side, holding his hand.” Duke also released statements of condolences from retired Hall of Fame men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski and athletics director Nina King.

Harris spent 41 years as the Blue Devils’ radio voice for men’s basketball and football before retiring in 2017.

That tenure included calling 1,392 men’s basketball games, 13 Final Fours and all five of the Blue Devils’ NCAA championships (1991, 1992, 2001, 2010 and 2015) under Krzyzewski.

Harris closed his tenure calling football games in November 2016 with 471 straight games, as well as six bowl games and Duke’s trip to the 2013 Atlantic Coast Conference football championship game.

“For decades as our radio play-by-play broadcaster, Bob told the story of Duke Athletics better than anyone,” Krzyzewski said. “He was much more than an announcer to all of us. He was a family member who absolutely loved Duke and everything it stands for.

“We are so thankful that it was his voice that shared our journey each season with so many Duke fans around the world. He was adored by so many of them. The Krzyzewski family offers our deepest condolences to Phyllis and their loved ones. It was my honor to call Bob my friend.”

In addition to his wife, Harris is survived by daughter Bobbi Harris-McCoy; son-in-law, Ron McCoy; and two grandchildren.


AP sports:

Copyright © 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up