Joeseph Don Meredith, more commonly known as “Dandy Don” to Cowboys fans and football fans in general has passed away at the age of 72. Don was born in a small east Texas town of Mount Vernon on April 10th 1938. He was recruited to play his college ball at Southern Methodist University where he lead the Southwest Conference in passing back in 1958 and 1959. Dandy Don had the distinction of being an all American in his time at SMU also. But one of the really neat facts about him, is that he never played a home football game outside of the North Texas region.
Don Meredith was drafted by the Chicago Bears in the third round of the 1960 draft. But he was subsequently traded to a forming franchise called the Dallas Cowboys for future draft picks. But he was also drafted by the Dallas Texans, but refused to play for them, instead choosing to become a Dallas Cowboy of the NFL. “Dandy Don” was a backup for his first two seasons in the NFL behind Eddie LeBarron, but was able to split time in 1962, and won the job out right in 1963. While never taking the team to a championship, he was the leader of back to back teams who lost to the Green Bay Packers. His career was a good one for the Cowboys and was voted to 3 pro bowls. He was also named NFL player of the year in 1966. While never taking the Cowboys to a Super Bowl, he was always a fan favorite for his toughness and grit. He retired from football after the 1969 season.
He went on from his football career to be a broadcaster, which he was most famously known for the doing ABC’s Monday Night Football with Howard Cossell and Frank Gifford. Don became known on the broadcasts for singing “Turn out the lights, the party’s over” whenever the game reached a point where it was decided. He had a good broadcasting career and had some comical moments to say the least. He retired from broadcasting in 1984 after calling ABC’s first Super Bowl. Meredith received the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Pete Rozelle Radio-Television award in 2007, and he was put into the Cowboys Ring of Honor in 1976.
After he left broadcasting, Meredithdid a few commercials and cameos on some shows, but he spent most of his time at his Santa Fe home with his wife. Which is where he passed away last night of a reported brain hemorrhage. Today God’s team has gotten a great quarterback, he will surely be missed. Rest in Peace “Dandy Don” and thank you for the contributions to this franchise. As of right now, there is no word if the Cowboys plan to do anything to honor Meredith.