WATCH: Bill Walton Went Full Bill Walton on ‘College Gameday’

by Suzanne Halliburton
watch-bill-walton-went-full-bill-walton-college-gameday

Zany Bill Walton didn’t disappoint Saturday morning during a crazy, caffeinated early-morning appearance on ESPN’s College Football Gameday.

He was on set to rep his UCLA Bruins. Because if you don’t know, Bill Walton still is Mr. Bruin, although he did it on the basketball court at Pauley Pavilion, leading UCLA to a pair of NCAA championships and 88 straight victories. But on Saturday, Walton was on set to celebrate the UCLA football team, which takes on Oregon Saturday afternoon at the Rose Bowl. It was extra early for everyone, considering UCLA is on Pacific time.

When ESPN brings GameDay to the UCLA campus for the first time, ever, you can’t bring in anyone else but Bill Walton as the guest picker.

Seriously, where else would you hear this line? “Ever seen a bear fight a duck?”

College GameDay tweeted a video clip showing a slice of the Bill Walton experience. The caption? “Bill Walton brought it on GameDay.”

Bill Walton growled like a Bruin. And as ESPN showed some of his old hard-court highlights from the 1970s, Walton screamed “make a shot, please. Send it back. Yea. Football. Here We Go.” (The laughter you heard in the background was Desmond Howard, who was having almost as much fun as Walton).

By this time, Walton was standing up. “Let me get down in my stance,” he said. “Let me snack some of these guys out of the way. Coach (Lee Corso), you’re with me. Here we go. Bears (Walton growls some more) Ducks! Quack, quack!”

Walton growled some more during his appearance. Chris Fallica, who goes by Bear on the ESPN set, tweeted: “If I do nothing else in life, at least I can say I’ve growled like a bear back and forth with Bill Walton.”

Bill Walton Even Nuzzled Corso’s Ear (While Wearing a Bruins Head)

And there was more Bruin love to the delight of Bill Walton. Corso is the last to make his game picks. It’s a Saturday tradition. He usually gives them by putting on the head of the selectee’s mascot. The Oregon Duck was on stage, standing near Corso. It was so much pressure.

Corso told the mascot “It’s no secret the Oregon Duck is my favorite. I love the duck. I even have his book.” Then Corso proclaims “this is tricky business.”

He grabbed a Bears head and put it on. Walton loved the choice and nuzzled his ear.

But wait, do you want more Bill Walton animal sounds? Before he growled like a Bruin, he also tuned his growl to sound like a BYU Cougar. He even moved his hands like Cougar paws when he selected BYU to beat Washington State.

But did you know, Walton can mimic more than Bears and Cougars?

Last December, he was calling a basketball game between Texas and Indiana. And he stopped to talk about his dog, Potter.

“At our campsite this morning,” Walton said during the telecast, “we had a birthday celebration for Potter.”

His announcing partner asked what Potter said at the party.

“Woof, woof, give me some food, will you big guy.”

Bill Walton is a national treasure.

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