Fans will have a hard time thinking about the Cleveland Browns radio without thinking of Doug Dieken.
In fact, it will be almost impossible now that the team has named the radio booth after the legendary announcer.
Whoever replaces Dieken next season will call games from the Doug Dieken Radio Booth at FirstEnergy Stadium.
We have renamed our home radio booth at @FEStadium "The Doug Dieken Radio Booth"
— Cleveland Browns (@Browns) January 9, 2022
The team announced the change during the Browns season finale against the Bengals Sunday.
There was a small ceremony honoring Dieken during the game, as well.
Dieken logged 34 seasons as the Browns color-analyst, including 23 seasons with Jim Donovan.
— Bernie Kosar (@BernieKosarQB) January 9, 2022
Donovan and Dieken are the only radio team to call Browns games since their rebirth in 1999, prompting Donovan to say,
“It’s hard to think of a Cleveland Browns game without Doug Dieken being part of it, and it will be difficult to look to my right and not see him there. He’s a Browns legend and great broadcaster that fits so well with what the Browns are all about. He connected with their fans. It’s going to be a big adjustment for all of us come next season.”
Dieken called his first game for the Browns in 1985 alongside Nev Chandler and Jim Mueller.
Chandler took over play-by-play duties alongside Dieken for the next 8 seasons before Casey Coleman stepped in for 2 years.
Dieken More Than a Browns Broadcasting Legend
Doug Dieken was a Brown long before he took to broadcasting, enjoying a 14-season playing career.
Cleveland selected the offensive lineman in the 6th round of the 1971 NFL Draft out of Illinois.
After showing what he could do as a rookie, he took over the Browns left tackle spot from the legendary Dick Schafrath.
He went on to play tackle for 203 consecutive games (194 starts), only the third left tackle in Browns history.
Dieken was a Pro Bowl selection in 1980 and played on 4 Browns playoff teams.
— John Skrtic (@SkrticX) January 9, 2022
But the very first game he ever played as a Brown is still one of the most viewed in NFL history.
It was the first preseason game of the 1971 NFL season.
That game was filmed to be used as the backdrop game in the Academy Award-winning movie, Brians Song.
Dieken probably remembers another game toward the end of his career far more than that inauspicious debut.
That game was in 1983 when Dieken scored a “big man’s touchdown.”
Irreplaceable- Inside and Outside the Booth
Doug Dieken was more than a former player and broadcaster.
He was a beloved and ever-present figure in the Browns locker room for over 50 years.
Dozens of people made the trek to the radio booth during Sunday’s game to say goodbye and thanks to the man.
Doug Dieken on having Browns radio booth named after him:
‘For as many trips I make to the bath room I thought they’d name the bath room after me.’
— Tony Grossi (@TonyGrossi) January 10, 2022
Dieken always had a story or a joke at the ready, including when he found out about the renaming of the radio booth.
“With all the trips to the restroom I made over the years, I thought they’d name the bathroom after me,” he quipped before adding, “They say ‘Luckiest man in the world’? [I’m] pretty lucky,” he said. “It’s been an honor.”
The Browns legend is a former NFL Man of the Year (1982) and worked with various Cleveland-area charities.
There is a humanitarian award named after Dieken, the inaugural award winner, by the Cleveland Touchdown Club.
He is an inductee of the Greater Cleveland Sports Hall of Fame (1992) and the Ohio Broadcasters Hall of Fame (2003).