Dick Vitale Rumors
It might not look like much now, but St. Cecilia’s is famous for having been compared to legendary Rucker Park of New York because of all the big names who came through. Isiah. Magic. Gervin. Also, David Bing. That’s four of the greatest players in NBA history. Joe Dumars, Rick Mahorn and Dennis Rodman of “Bad Boys” Pistons fame. B.J. Armstrong. Chris Webber. Jalen Rose. Derrick Coleman. Steve Smith. Shane Battier. Jimmy Walker and Spencer Haywood and Ralph Simpson and Campy Russell. Dick Vitale (awesome with a capital “A,” baby). Dozens of others.
Longtime ESPN college basketball analyst Dick Vitale said the initial shock of the 2020 NCAA tournament being canceled left him despondent. Then Vitale said he quickly became grounded in the seriousness of the coronavirus pandemic that’s prompted all NCAA spring sports to be canceled and pro sports leagues to be put on hold. “I love March and college basketball as much as anyone. But what’s going on is bigger than sports,” Vitale told USA TODAY Sports by phone. “When peoples’ lives are at risk, basketball goes on the backburner. Initially, I thought postponing the NCAA tournament made more sense. Those three weeks, there’s no greater time in sports for mom, dad, grandma and grandpa. But at the end of the day, we’re dealing with an infectious disease. I said to myself, ‘My friend, you love basketball. But you love people more.'”
“There are politicians worried about the economy, and I understand that because no one wants to be out of a job,” Vitale said. “But the economy should never come at the expense of people’s lives. Seniors should not have to sacrifice for the economy. I want to live, man. My wife wants to live, man. “To the political leaders, forget liberal, conservative, this is not about political agendas. We need to keep the (guidelines) in place.” Vitale hosts an annual Gala to raise funds for the V Foundation and pediatric cancer research. He’ll invite celebrity sports figures, with Dabo Swinney attending last year. Vitale moved the Gala, usually held in May, to September.
Back in December 1979, Dick Vitale called ESPN’s first-ever college basketball telecast. Guess what? Nearly 40 years later, the 80-year old’s still in demand come contract time. ESPN is giving sports TV legend “Dickie V” a new contract extension that will take him through the 2021-2022 season, sources tell Front Office Sports. During a phone interview, Vitale confirmed the new deal that’s scheduled to take him through what would be his 42nd year on ESPN.
14 Mar 17
Dick Vitale has been synonymous with college basketball on ESPN since the very beginning, and he’ll be sticking around a while longer. The gregarious color analyst has agreed to a new contract that carries him through the 2018-19 season, ESPN announced Thursday. The end of the deal coincides with Vitale’s 40th anniversary at the network he joined shortly after it went on the air in 1979.
Last season, when he spoke to For The Win, he cited the same reason for why he had no plans for retirement. It’s a point he reiterated again this week. “(This is) going to be my 36th year (on ESPN),” he said. “I told Dan Patrick earlier and I’m going to tell you: My goal is to be the first broadcaster in the history of broadcasting to work at a game when I’m 100 years old.