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Howard Cosell

Born: March 25, 1918, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Died: April 23, 1995 (age 77), New York City, New York

Howard CosellHoward William Cosell (born Howard William Cohen) was an American sports journalist.

What do you know about Howard Cosell? Try this Quick Quiz.

1. Howard Cosell graduated with a bachelor's degree in English from New York University, where he was a member of Pi Lambda Phi. He then went to the New York University School of Law where he earned his JD, and was a member of the NYU Law Review. Cosell was admitted to the New York state bar in 1941.

  • True or False?

2. Cosell was a major during World War Two. What military branch did he serve?

  • Army
  • Army Air Force
  • Marines

3. In 1953, he hosted a radio program. What was the program about?

  • Major League Sports
  • Sports Law
  • Little League

4. Cosell took his "tell-it-like-it-is" approach when he teamed with the ex-Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher "Big Numba Thirteen" Ralph Branca on WCBS-89's pre- and post-game radio shows of the New York Mets beginning in 1962.

  • True or False?

5. On radio, Cosell did his show, Speaking of Sports, as well as sports reports and updates for affiliated radio stations around the country; he continued his radio duties even after he became prominent on television. Cosell then became a sports anchor in New York, where he served in that role from 1961 to 1974. What was the TV station?


6. Cosell rose to prominence covering boxer Muhammad Ali, starting when he still fought under his birth name, Cassius Clay. The two seemed to be friends despite their very different personalities, and complimented each other in broadcasts. In a time when many sports broadcasters avoided touching social, racial, or other controversial issues, and kept a certain level of collegiality towards the sports figures they commented on, Cosell did not, and indeed built a reputation around his catchphrase: “ I'm just telling it like it is.”True or False?7. During Cosell's tenure as a sportscaster, he maintained a feuding stance with legendary New York sports writer and columnist, who rarely missed an opportunity to denigrate the broadcaster in print. Who was the writer?

  • Henry Brooks
  • Dick Young
  • Doug Cooper

8. In 1977, a helicopter-mounted camera lingered on the scene for a few seconds and Cosell said in a weary voice, “There it is, ladies and gentlemen, The Bronx is burning.” What was Cosell doing?

  • World Series at Yankee Stadium
  • Monday Night Football at Yankee Stadium
  • Boxing at Yankee Stadium

9. After writing the book I Never Played the Game, which chronicled his disenchantment with fellow commentators on Monday Night Football, among other things, he was taken off scheduled announcing duties for the 1985 World Series. Who replaced him in the booth for the World Series?

  • Johnny Bench
  • Joe Morgan
  • Tim McCarver

10. In the feature film Ali, who is nominated for an Academy Award playing Howard Cosell?

  • Jon Voight
  • Paul Newman
  • Robert Redford

11. In 1995, he died from a heart embolism at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City.

  • True or False?

12. Where is Howard Cosell buried?

  • Hollywood Forever, Hollywood, California
  • Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Glendale, California
  • Cremated, buried with his wife Emmy in Westhampton Cemetery, Westhampton, New York

Howard Cosell Answers

  1. True
  2. Army
  3. Little League
  4. False. It was WABC-77’s.
  5. WABC-TV
  6. True
  7. Dick Young
  8. World Series at Yankee Stadium
  9. Tim McCarver
  10. Jon Voight
  11. True
  12. Angels on your pillowCremated, buried with his wife Emmy in Westhampton Cemetery, Westhampton, New York

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