Editor’s note: Former Daily Journal sportswriter Gregg Ellis, now an Associate Director/Communications for Mississippi State athletics, offers some reflections on the late Hank Flick. The former MSU public address announcer died last week at age 73.
STARKVILLE – For years, Mississippi State fans were graciously welcomed to the Hump or Scott Field with a “Good, good afternoon,” or a “Good, good evening.”
And with those bellowing words and distinctive nasally delivery, you knew it was game on.
Yes. Hank Flick had a way with words. A passionate way, you might say, and perhaps even quirky. He brought a sportsman-like energy behind the mic, a delivery Bulldog fans, as well as those from the opposing teams, became dearly accustomed to, often joining in on his introductions. If imitation is indeed flattery, then Hank Flick set the bar.
The Bulldog faithful, both young and old, all have their stories and memories of his voice. He was a tradition, just like cowbells and the “Maroon & White” cheer. And that’s why on Thursday, when word spread of his untimely death, we all felt we lost something deeply cherished from our game day excitement.
And for many, it was more than just game day. Dr. Flick was also a renown and beloved communications professor on campus. Since his death, my email has been inundated with stories of what he meant to his students and how he changed their lives. “He made me a better student and a better person,” one said. “He was the best teacher I ever had,” another explained.
Indeed, his death brings an unusual quietness. Surreal.
He loved Mississippi State, and he loved his students and the creative nicknames he bestowed upon them. Maybe it was his uniqueness, or perhaps his personality. Whatever the case, that familiar, unforgettable voice will forever resonate – Mississippi State style.