If you grew up watching Iowa basketball in the glory days of the 1980s, chances are your life is tied to Mac McCausland. You’ve heard his voice, usually alongside Larry Morgan, for Hawkeye TV shows across the state.
When Roy, Eddie and BJ became No. 1 in the nation in 1987, Mac McCausland was on call as a color analyst. McCausland’s name and voice were synonymous with Iowa basketball in golden times, as he regularly broadcast games in the 1980s and 1990s. His analysis was relentlessly positive and upbeat. And when the game was in control in favor of the Hawkeyes, McCausland would announce his famous line that it was “time for fries and salsa.”
In other words, time to celebrate.
Now we celebrate McCausland’s impact and life. Mac McCausland died Saturday night of natural causes at his home in Las Vegas, the University of Iowa confirmed in an email Monday. McCausland was 75 years old.
McCausland was a member of Ralph Miller’s teams in Iowa in the 1960s. His son, Kent McCausland, spent four years as a lettersmith in Iowa under Tom Davis (1996 to 1999). It was a dream come true for Mac McCausland, who continued to manage the shows while his son played for the Hawkeyes. Kent McCausland would make 214 3-pointers in his career and was the national leader in sophomore 3-point percentage, at 52.2%.
Even recently, Mac and Kent were appearing in local TV spots with broadcaster Rob Brooks.
“The Iowa basketball family is saddened to learn of the passing of Mac McCausland,” Iowa men’s basketball coach Fran McCaffery said in a statement. “He and I have become extremely close over the past 12 years. Not only has he been a fixture in our games for many decades, Mac was at our practices and traveled with the team on some road trips. He had a deep passion for Hawkeye basketball and his family. Our deepest condolences go out to the McCausland family.”
Mac McCausland was also a past president of the National I-Club.
UI said funeral services are on hold with Locke’s Funeral Home in Waterloo.