Voice of Tiger Stadium makes 30 years
BATON ROUGE - As the Tigers take to the field Saturday night in Death Valley, one person will be welcoming the start of a milestone. Dan Borne will begin his 30th season as The Voice of Tiger Stadium.
Borne has sat high above the field for three decades announcing football games. His voice reverberating around the stadium with plays of the game and introductions of special guests.
"Ladies and gentlemen... it's the beginning of the fourth quarter. The sun will soon find its home in the western sky and it will be Saturday night in Death Valley," Borne can be heard saying through the speakers.
He's been preparing for the kickoff against McNeese since Monday, "That's the only one I'm focused on right now," he said.
Over the years, Borne says he's seen a lot change in the cathedral of college football. The stadium has grown from 60-something thousand to over 100,000 fans.
"The pace of the game has changed," he said. "It's given you less time to announce who ran the ball and who made the stop."
Borne attended undergrad at Nicholls State University and moved to Baton Rouge for graduate school at LSU. He got a job at a local television station anchoring sports and reporting news.
He took over for Sid Crocker before the '86 season after already having a deep connection to the stadium. He wrote a letter to LSU, inquiring to be the PA guy. Borne says he forgot about it, after months went by with no answer. Finally, someone invited him in.
"After 30 minutes or so checking me on the pronunciation of some Cajun names, they said, 'You can be the PA guy.' I thanked him profusely but I asked them why and they said, 'Because no one else had asked,'" Borne told News Two's Brittany Weiss.
Borne was there for the Earthquake Game, which produced a roar so loud from the crowd it registered on the Richter Scale. He's welcomed national champions home, witnessed great wins and great losses. The one event in Tiger Stadium that stands out among the rest is the Tennessee game after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. It was a night the Tigers were defeated but Borne says it was a game where life intersected with sport.
"In Tiger Stadium, there's no money issue there's no race issue there's no political issue, everybody was pulling for the Tigers," he said. "We could come together, and be cheered on by a football team."
Borne has some help announcing each game. He says he couldn't do the job on his own. Borne jokes team as a whole generally gets it right every time, but every now and then there's a mistake.
"The thing about it is, you can't take it back. Once it's out it's out," said Borne. "I gave a touchdown to a guy once who wasn't even in the game. His mother was very pleased."
Borne went on to correct his mistake, after seeing the players number was similar to another player's on the field.
Approaching his 30th season, Borne says he never expected to last this long. He still remembers watching the Tigers as a young man and remembering how surreal it was to be there watching. So long as he has "the edge," he'll keep announcing
"Like every premiere of every show, you're always kind of getting back into shape," he said.
Borne will kick off his 30th season as The Voice of Tiger Stadium Saturday as LSU takes on McNeese State University.