nelson dev
Dev Nelson

  • K-State radio broadcaster for 25 years
  • Broadcasting career spanned fifty years
  • Member of the KSU Athletic Hall of Fame
Nelson, Devere "Dev"
Inducted - 1998

Born: April 6, 1926 - Marquette, Kansas

Died: January 16, 1993 - Shawnee, KS

Graduated: Marquette (KS) H.S., 1944; Kansas State University. 1949


For a quarter of a century, Devere Vincent Nelson was the ‘Voice of the Wildcats’ and when he died in 1993, he was eulogized as the ‘embodiment of Kansas State - sincere, positive, loyal, always ready to do something to help.’

Early Career

He began his broadcasting career in Pittsburg in 1949 after graduating from K-State and also worked at radio stations in Lincoln, NE., Salina and Hutchinson before becoming director of the Kansas State Sports Network and sports director of WIBW Radio and Television in Topeka. At WIBW, Nelson originated the station’s state high school basketball coverage at all sites, which is still used today.

“Voice of the Wildcats”

A native of Marquette, Kansas, Nelson was the sports broadcaster for Kansas State University from 1954 to ‘79. In his 25 years as K-State’s play-by-play announcer, Nelson was named by his peers as the Kansas Sportscaster of the Year five times and was the first play-by-play broadcaster on the Big Eight Basketball Network. He was named as a trustee to the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame in 1988 and, in addition to his broadcasting duties, was the sports information director at Kansas State from 1966 to ‘72. Nelson, with his deep booming voice, was perhaps best known for his pet phrase that he used when K-State games got exiting, telling his listeners they were hearing a “rip-snortin’, hootenanny, double-barreled, deep-dish dilly.”


Nelson was selected to the Kansas State University Athletic Hall of Fame in 1991.