Delivered with pulse-pounding veracity and unequaled passion, Wayne Larrivee and Larry McCarren have been the voices of Green Bay Packers since 1999. These gatekeepers have been responsible for guiding football moments into immortal experiences that reverberate through the annals of Green Bay history.
The Green Bay broadcast team has been the premier soundtrack of our memories, but also the trusted voices to bring the action to life.
Larrivee’s tempo and crystal clear delivery is always a comforting return in the dog days of summer. His trademark, “and there is your dagger,” has been the declaration of victory for the Green and Gold, concluding each game in the most operatic fashion.
Honored alumni of Emerson College in Boston, Larrivee shares the distinguished pedigree with acclaimed filmmaker, Paul Thomas Anderson and celebrated playwright, Spalding Gray. Cerebral and articulate in his craft, Larrivee has been a staple for the Midwest in providing concise assessments and insight.
Not to mention, but he does cover the Chicago Cubs (ugh).
If Larrivee represents the mind of the Green Bay faithful, then McCarren’s burly candor has to be the heart. Known as the “Rock” for his consistency during his Packers days, McCarren has brought a first-hand experience of battles waged in the trenches. Using the lessons from his playing days, McCarren’ s dependability has extended from the gridiron to the booth.
What makes McCarren truly special is the armchair observation in key moments, by bringing an intimate and humorous dimension to the broadcast.
Numerous calls throughout their career, Larrivee would set the stage with each minute detail, only for McCarren to blurt out the ID for the fan at home.
Simple words like, “wow,” “no way,” and “yes,” do not seem like appropriate descriptions of a last-second touchdown play, but positioned against the smooth articulation of Larrivee, the words carry the heft of a Hummer.
The combination of brain and brawn has created one of the most unique broadcasts in the league, and in unassuming circumstances I was able to see their dedication to the profession.
While covering a 2010 Packers training camp, I snapped pictures of the gargantuan athletes peddling toward Ray Nitschke Field, and was fortunate enough to be on the sidelines to experience a practice session.
A sudden burst of laughter startled me out of my composure, and spinning around I discovered to my pure amazement, a 6-3 behemoth standing on a parked beige golf cart.
It was McCarren.
Arms-folded, and his hands outstretched on his elbows, I could see the mangled pinky digit. Numerous memories flooded my mind as to how that very finger created uncomfortable groans by family and friends when McCarren would visibly accentuate any point.
Now, if you have not had the experince of seeing the pinky, just imagine your very own pinky, then form the middle to represent a sharp turn outward and you’re close.
Turning back toward the field to display some sort of professional behavior, I froze in my tracks at about 90 degrees to find myself standing next to the samurai of the sound byte.
There was Larrivee.
Observant of each detail akin to his broadcasts, Larrivee stood engulfed in the mundane with unparalleled concentration.
In the company of giants I stood, reminiscing about the unforgettable calls logged from childhood. The Al Harris interception against the Seahawks in the 2003 wildcard game, or the Greg Jennings game-winning reception against the Chargers in 2007, each have a special place in my development.
To this the day, the team continues the same dedication of bringing to life the fascinating world of the NFL. As we remember a great broadcaster such as the late Pat Summerall, we take time to understand the art of being brought into the experience.
Yet, when we listen to the team of McCarren and Larrivee, we are not just being told the game.
We are sharing it.