Longtime Hoosiers PA announcer Chuck Crabb retires at 71

Chuck Crabb. (Photo courtesy of IU Athletics)

Chuck Crabb, the public address announcer for Indiana men’s basketball games and many other Hoosiers sports for over four decades, is calling it a career.

The 71-year-old Crabb announced his retirement on Monday. The decision takes effect immediately.

Crabb and his booming, baritone voice became a fixture at football and men’s basketball games after replacing Bert Laws in 1977. Over the next 45 years, Crabb added men’s soccer games, women’s basketball games and men’s and women’s track and field competitions to his repertoire.

The 1973 Indiana graduate also worked at the Los Angeles and Atlanta Olympics in 1984 and 1996, called men’s World Cup games in 1994 and women’s World Cup games in 1999. He served in other capacities at the Pan American Games, American sports and Olympics festivals, the U.S. National Track and Field Championships and the U.S. Track and Field Olympic Trials.

But it was Hoosiers basketball where Crabb made his biggest impact.

In Bloomington, he introduced players and coaches with a booming, baritone, almost emotionless voice that treated everyone the same. And at a time pro and college teams increasingly adopted dramatic, pitched introductions, Crabb was a throwback.

Students even took pleasure in prompting Crabb to make his traditional gameday announcement of fan misbehavior potentially leading to technical fouls.

Through the years, he saw it all and called games for two national championship teams. He even had a courtside seat for coach Bob Knight’s infamous chair-throwing incident and then Knight’s return to Assembly Hall in 2020, just before the COVID-19 pandemic took root across America.

Crabb grew up in Brazil, Indiana, a rural town between Indianapolis and Terre Haute, and had been an associate athletic director since 1990. He received the Indiana University Bicentennial Medal in 2020, the Indiana University Foundation President’s Award in 2010 and the Jerry F. Tardy Price of Indiana Award in 2006.

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One thought on “Longtime Hoosiers PA announcer Chuck Crabb retires at 71

  1. He has been a great “staple” in Indiana University. Consistent, respectful demeanor while accepting many roles in the university’s athletic department. Nothing he would not do, when asked by the university. Sorry to lose his announcing of the B-Ball games. Chuck is the epitome when folks reference “bleeds cream and crimson”!!!

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