Pat Foley

Pat Foley (born 1954) is an American retired play-by-play commentator for ice hockey.

Pat Foley
Foley photographed on June 11, 2010
Born1954 (age 6869)
EducationB.S., Michigan State U.
OccupationPlay-by-play commentator
Years active1977–2022

Personal life

Born in Glenview, Illinois in 1954,[1] Pat Foley is the son of Mary and Bob Foley.[2] He is an alumnus of Loyola Academy and Michigan State University, with a Bachelor of Science in telecommunications from the latter.[1]


In 1964, Foley was allowed into the radio booth at Wrigley Field and sat alongside announcers Lou Boudreau and Jack Quinlan. This sparked his interest in play-by-play commentating.[2] After calling baseball and hockey games at Michigan State University, in 1977[3] he began his career in Grand Rapids, Michigan announcing minor league hockey games. His father would take the recordings of Foley at Grand Rapids Owls' games and pass them along to Michael Wirtz, brother of Bill Wirtz, owner of the Chicago Blackhawks. This secured Foley a position at the company, and his first game the night Stan Mikita's number was retired[2] in 1981.[1]

Foley worked for the Blackhawks as a play-by-play radio commentator from 1981–2006.[1] He was fired "amid a rift with [Blackhawks] management" in 2006.[4] Foley spent the 2006–07 and 2007–08 AHL seasons calling games for the Chicago Wolves.[5] He returned to the Blackhawks in 2008 following the death of Bill Wirtz,[2] and partnered with Eddie Olczyk.[1] On June 23, 2021, the Blackhawks announced via Twitter that the 2021–22 NHL season would be Foley's final season calling games.[6] Foley explained his decision to retire, commenting, "I just don't have 82 in me anymore. That's a lot of games, and 82 is not for me. Will I never step behind a microphone again? Not saying that. But not full-time."[7] He called his final official game on April 14, 2022, after 39 years with the Blackhawks.[8]


Foley became renowned for his exclamation during the Blackhawks' game against the Minnesota North Stars for the 1985 Stanley Cup playoffs. When Murray Bannerman "made a dramatic save on a breakaway, Foley cried out, 'BANNERRRMANNN!'" By 2014, Foley was still constantly asked to repeat the iconic outburst.[2] John McDonough described Foley as "synonymous with Blackhawks hockey [with a voice that] resonates loudly to our entire fan base."[5]

Foley won Emmy Awards in 1991,[5] 2009, 2012, 2014, and 2015.[3] He was inducted into the Chicagoland Sports Hall of Fame in 2002.[1] On April 19, 2013, NBC Sports Chicago honored Foley for his 30th season with the Blackhawks.[3] In 2014, he received the Foster Hewitt Memorial Award[2] and entered the Hockey Hall of Fame.[9] In 2019, the National Sports Media Association named Foley the Illinois Sportscaster of the Year.[3]


  1. "Blackhawks Broadcasters Foley & Olczyk Receive Three Year Extensions". Chicagoland Radio & Media. December 31, 2010. Archived from the original on December 24, 2013. Retrieved November 17, 2019.
  2. Sherman, Ed (November 15, 2014). "Blackhawks voice Pat Foley's journey to Hockey Hall of Fame". Chicago Tribune. ISSN 2165-171X. Archived from the original on June 28, 2021. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
  3. "Pat Foley - TV Play-By-Play". National Hockey League. Archived from the original on October 18, 2021. Retrieved October 18, 2021.
  4. "People & Personalities: Foley Officially Back With Blackhawks". SportsBusiness Daily. Advance. June 17, 2008. Archived from the original on February 12, 2009. Retrieved November 17, 2019.
  5. "Pat Foley returns to Hawks". Chicago Sun-Times. Cyrus Freidheim Jr. June 16, 2008. ISSN 1553-8478. Archived from the original on July 1, 2008. Retrieved November 17, 2019.
  6. Chicago Blackhawks [@NHLBlackhawks] (June 23, 2021). "Hall of Fame play-by-play broadcaster Pat Foley will call his final season of #Blackhawks hockey during the 2021-22 campaign. A titan of the NHL and Chicago broadcasting community, Foley's 39th season in the booth will include a year-long celebration" (Tweet). Archived from the original on June 23, 2021. Retrieved June 23, 2021 via Twitter.
  7. Verdi, Bob (April 11, 2022). "VERDICT: Voice of a Generation, Foley Set to Sign Off After 39 Seasons". National Hockey League. Archived from the original on April 17, 2022. Retrieved May 1, 2022. Pat Foley to wrap 'fairy tale' career this week as team's longest-serving broadcaster
  8. Kueppers, Courtney (April 15, 2022). "After 39 seasons at the mic, Blackhawks announcer Pat Foley called his final game Thursday". WBEZ. Associated Press. Archived from the original on April 15, 2022. Retrieved May 1, 2022.
  9. Powers, Scott (November 17, 2014). "Foley's career 'beyond dreamlike' as he enters Hall of Fame". Chicago: ESPN. Archived from the original on February 19, 2021. Retrieved February 19, 2021.
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