Longtime Jayhawks broadcaster Max Falkenstien dies at 95

LAWRENCE, Kan. — Max Falkenstien, a longtime broadcaster for the University of Kansas men’s basketball and football games, died Monday afternoon at age 95.

Falkenstien did his first radio broadcast of a KU basketball game on March 18, 1946. He did play-by-play for the teams until 1984, when he switched to a commentator role, leading the way for Bob Davis to assume play-by-play duties.

Falkenstien and Davis did KU football and basketball games until his retirement in 2006, after 60 seasons of covering Jayhawk athletics.

“Although I still am in good health, I realize there finally comes a time when one must call an end to something, no matter how much he enjoys it,” he said at the time, according to KU Athletics.

Before working with KU, Falkenstien worked at WREN radio station in Lawrence and WIBW radio and television in Topeka. He was also the general manager of Sunflower Cable in Lawrence. He also worked at the Douglas County Bank.

“I’ve known Max since 1985, and back then, even being young in the profession, I quickly realized that Max was as big a part of the great history of KU basketball and football as the players and coaches were. He was an absolute joy to be around, and he will be remembered as an absolute treasure,” said KU men’s basketball coach Bill Self.

His former colleague Bob Davis also remembers him fondly.

“Max was a member of the greatest generation. A pioneer sports play-by-play broadcaster in Lawrence and Topeka, and just a fun guy to be around. In the years we worked and traveled together we spent much of our time laughing. He once said we should have been married. In all these years I don’t think we’d ever had an argument, so I guess we couldn’t have been married! We had some great times together. I loved him,” he said.

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