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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Martin "Marty" Glickman (August 14, 1917 - January 3, 2001) was a Jewish American track and field athlete and sports announcer, born in The Bronx, New York.




Track career spoiled by anti-Semitism at the Berlin Olympics

Glickman was a member of the 1936 U.S. 1936 Summer Olympics team in Berlin, Germany as a sprinter. He had been a track star at Syracuse University. Glickman traveled to Germany and spent two weeks practicing as part of the 400-yard relay team. However, the day before they were scheduled to compete, Glickman and teammate Sam Stoller, two American Jews, were replaced on the 4x100m relay team.

By Glickman’s own account, the last-minute switch was a straightforward case of anti-Semitism.[1] Avery Brundage, chairman of the United States Olympic Committee, was an enthusiastic supporter of Hitler’s regime and denied that the Nazis followed anti-Semitic policies.[2] Brundage and assistant U.S. Olympic track coach Dean Cromwell were members of America First, an isolationist political movement that attracted American Nazi sympathizers.

Glickman's friend Jesse Owens was apologetic and protested the maneuver, even though he was one of the replacements, along with Ralph Metcalfe.

In 1998, William J. Hybl, president of the United States Olympic Committee, citing: “great evidence of anti-Semitism was there,” presented Glickman with a special plaque: “in lieu of the gold medals they didn’t win.” [3]

Football & basketball

A graduate of Syracuse University, Marty Glickman was also an All-American football player. He had brief careers in professional football and basketball.


Glickman went on to become a distinguished sportscaster, getting his start as the voice man for the sports newsreels distributed by Paramount News, during the years 1948 to 1957, (when Paramount News' newsreel production ended) covering all local, national, and global sports during that era, every genre completely covered. Marty's poetic lilt and slight New York twang made him a legendary favorite in those early years of news production.

Following his stint at Paramount News, he became best known as the voice of the New York Knicks (21 years) and New York Giants (23 years). He also did some New York Rangers broadcasts. In the early 1960s, Glickman teamed with analyst Al DeRogatis, an ex-Giants defensive lineman, to form a legendary broadcast team for "New York Football Giants" fans, many of whom discovered a sound reason to turn down the TV audio in their living rooms and turn up the radio while those in the stands at Yankee Stadium held transistors to their ears. In later years, the WNEW-originated broadcasts included WNEW sports editor Chip Cipolla. Glickman and Cipolla utilized a unique format in which Glickman broadcast the offense and Cipolla the defense.

Glickman had a phrase describing Giant's fullback Alex Webster as going for "a couple of three yards."

Glickman was a longtime mentor of broadcasters. His most famous protege, Marv Albert, eventually called radio broadcasts of the Knicks, Giants, and Rangers. He also aided the careers of acclaimed sportscasters Spencer Ross and Johnny Most. Glickman himself became a member of the Curt Gowdy wing of the Basketball Hall of Fame.

Glickman joined radio station WHN in 1939 and was its sports director by 1943. When the New York Knickerbockers were formed in 1946, Glickman was their radio announcer. Later, he was the NBA's first TV announcer.

He was also the voice of the Yonkers Raceway for 12 years and the New York Jets for 11 years. Glickman did pre- and postgame shows for the Brooklyn Dodgers and New York Yankees for 22 years. Glickman was often heard on WPIX-11's telecasts of local college basketball during the winter. As sports director of WCBS Radio in the 1960s, he briefly resurrected the ancient broadcasting art of re-creation, voicing blind play-by-play accounts of segments of New York Yankees spring training games to the huddled, chilled, baseball-starved masses in the metropolitan area.

In addition, in the 1970s, Glickman also broadcast UConn football. Glickman returned to college football in 1985, calling Ivy League football games for PBS.

In addition to this, Glickman covered track meets, wrestling matches, roller derbies, and rodeos, even a marbles tournament. NBC employed him as a critic and teacher of its sports announcers. In 1988, Glickman returned to television on NBC as a play-by-play replacement on its NFL telecasts while protege Marv Albert was in Seoul covering the Olympics. He retired from broadcasting in December 1992, at age 74.


In 1996, his autobiography The Fastest Kid on the Block was published.


Glickman underwent heart bypass surgery December 14, 2000, and he died of complications on January 3, 2001. He was 83.[4]

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