Commentary

Roundball chatter

Updated: January 13, 2014, 5:05 PM ET
By Dick Vitale | ESPN.com

Roy Devyn MarbleRyan Young/Getty ImagesRoy Devyn Marble and Iowa showed they're for real with a road win at Ohio State.

Each week I write about the sport I love, college basketball:

• Before the season, I said that Iowa was definitely going to make the Big Dance. If anyone has doubts, call up Thad Matta of Ohio State. The Hawkeyes got a big win at Columbus on Sunday.

• Rick Pitino has a rising star in the coaching profession in his family. Minnesota's Richard Pitino has the Golden Gophers playing well in the tough Big Ten. It took 43 points between the super guard tandem of Keith Appling and Gary Harris to lead Michigan State past Minnesota in overtime at East Lansing.

• Jim Boeheim has the Orange rolling, as Syracuse remained unbeaten with an impressive win over North Carolina. My friends, the school should absolutely build a monument for this guy.

• Come on NCAA, it is time to make a decision on Florida forward  Chris Walker's eligibility. This situation has taken long enough.

• UCLA had the crowd against Arizona that it should have every game. Elite programs get big crowds no matter who they play and UCLA is a special program.

• I love watching Joe Jackson of Memphis play. He has such a passion on the court and it's infectious to his teammates.

• Vanderbilt suffered a blow when leading scorer Eric McClellan was thrown off the team. He was averaging 14.3 points per game this season, but off-court issues led to his dismissal.

• SMU's frontcourt depth was hampered when center Yanick Moreira suffered a knee injury. He is expected to be sidelined for several weeks. That is not good news for coach Larry Brown.

Dick Vitale

College Basketball analyst
Dick Vitale, college basketball's top analyst and ambassador, joined ESPN during the 1979-80 season. His thorough knowledge of the game is brought forth in an enthusiastic, passionate style. Vitale also contributes columns to ESPN.com.

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